The BIG BellyPosted: August 6, 2011 Filed under: breast cancer, food | Tags: diners, Greek immigrants, Salisbury Beach 1 Comment
I’m not much for big breakfasts. Not real crazy about greasy, meat-centric fare either, but I didn’t want to pass up a trip to Pat’s Diner this morning. It’s gotten great reviews from Payton. He went there one morning last summer while he was at the beach without me. I was home, just out of the hospital yet again and attached to a wound vacuum, which was enlisted to clean up the mess from the post-mastectomy infection.
My boy spoke highly of Pat’s, and while that alone would be enough for me, the fact that it’s run by some fellow Greeks sealed the deal.
Pat herself greeted us and showed us to our table, instructing a waitress to wipe the table, even though it looked plenty clean to me. Pat reminded me of all the Greek women I’ve known in my life–dark hair without a streak of grey despite her advanced age; sensible shoes juxtaposed with a snazzy dress, crisply pressed; maddeningly wrinkle-free skin; bossy yet loving countenance. She was very familiar to me indeed (minus the Boston accent, though). I smiled to myself as I reminisced in my head about my Thea Sophia and all women like her. Sweet but opinionated, fiercely devoted to family, and absolutely not content until everyone got up from the table with a full belly. The Greek women I know live by the mantra “Food is love made visible.”
The fellas alongside me ordered some of Pat’s finest: the “short” stack — pancakes as big as the plate; Amesbury omelette (spinach & lots of Swiss cheese); Irish eggs Benedict (corned beef hash instead of Canadian bacon); and the beach breakfast: eggs, toast, home fries, bacon, link & patty sausage, and ham steak. By all means, don’t forget the ham steak.
I was the odd one out with my egg beaters w assorted veggies & wheat toast. Instead of home fries, I opted for the other side dish: baked beans. They’re not just for breakfast anymore.
We did indeed get up from the table with full bellies, and as we passed Pat at the register on the way out, I told her we came all the way from Texas to eat at her place. She was delighted, and insisted I take a to-go menu with me as well as her business card. She asked me to send her a card from Texas. I promised her I will.
Trevor whispered to Pat that I too am Greek, and she was really delighted. She dug around under the counter a sec and handed me something, muttering that not everyone gets one of these. It’s a matted 8×10 color drawing of the exterior of the diner. Very cool. I will definitely send her a card from Texas.
What a great place–and owner. When I travel, I love to find the local places to get good people, good food, real connections. Thanks for sharing.