I was about two. My father asked what I wanted for dinner. Corned beef, I said.
We were living then with my maternal grandparents. My father a lowly bulldozer operator.
He went to the corner store and saw one can standing. With no money and just the promise to pay later, he must charm the owner. So for over an hour, he shot the breeze with the old man without taking his eyes off the corned beef. When he finally had the gumption to ask, the old man could not say no.
I had a good dinner that night and a story to tell for the rest of my life. My father passed several years ago on Mother’s Day. My mom followed in November of 2016. I miss them. Like a boy who must live with his grandparents and leave home.
Poverty tattoos the heart with tears that never dry.
Corned beef will always be a gustatory and emotional dish. It satisfies the stomach and feeds the heart. A memory never to be forgotten.