Behind Blue Eyes

 

“You’ve got the most beautiful blue eyes!…I’d think with eyes like that, doors would open for you!”

“Yeah, well, looks can be deceiving. I’m having a rough day.”

Her rough day was a lot different than a rough day for you or me. If her friend decided not to let her stay in her apartment, she’d be homeless. Her friend hadn’t made up her mind yet. Makes most people’s concerns seem insignificant.

The tall, thin tattooed young woman looked up at me. She was squatting on the sidewalk, giving her dog a dish of water. She’d come into the homeless shelter requesting water for him. “Whiskey” was a 13 year old pit bull. The sweetest dog you she could ever ask for. We had talked about owners and trainers and pit bull bans.

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It was my first time seeing her at the shelter. She didn’t eat much- one hot dog only; no soup, no Chinese-style pork. She probably had too much on her mind to think about food. Another person came by later asking for more water for his friend’s dog. I think the woman had a few friends she could rely on. I hoped so. I was glad she had her dog. I was concerned for her.

Another man was new to me today also. He told me he was dropped off in Windsor from his home in LaSalle (15 kms away) four days ago. He had no way home. In three days, he had eaten only a donut. He ate two hot dogs, with buns plus the pork. He made the mistake of putting too much hot sauce on the hot dogs. His ulcer gave him pain afterwards unfortunately. I offered him more bread. I’ve heard that helps with spicy food. I told him supper would be served in an hour and a half. Hoped it wouldn’t be too spicy for him. And, I let him know the hours that Street Help was open: 9-6. He  need not go hungry anymore.

 I spent half my time in the kitchen. I fried up five pounds of ground beef, I’m guessing. It was a huge amount. Big Ant did his magic and seasoned it for me. Minced onions, garlic salt, sriracha seasoning, red pepper seasoning, thyme, parsley, and… poultry seasoning! He judged how much to add by how it smelled when cooking. He inspires me to become a better cook.

Big Ant told me of using Coca Cola and BBQ sauce to cook ribs and also to speed up de-boning of a chicken! But, not to use Faygo or another type of cola because it would be too sweet. And, no diet Coke either!

We made the gravy with beef gravy mix. Again, Big Ant spiced it up, and then added soy sauce and honey garlic sauce as well. I thickened it with cornstarch. And made up a big dish of rice to accompany it. Salad had been donated. Romaine lettuce was added to it also to stretch it further. There were cupcakes for dessert. Chocolate  cupcakes and vanilla cupcakes with pink frosting and sparkles.

There was a big donation of Brenner’s all beef hot dogs plus bags and bags of buns. Hot dogs are always well-enjoyed at the shelter. Plus, lots of cans of tomatoes and kidney beans. I foresee a chili being made sometime soon.

The funniest part of the day was seeing expressions on people’s faces when they saw the sandwiches. Tuna and lunchmeat sandwiches were donated. But, the bread was pink and crustless! I haven’t seen that style of bread for years. It used to be a staple at baby showers way back when. And, apparently, it’s never been seen by some of the folks here until today. The verdict was the sandwiches were delicious!

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