I know that some people have really amazing memories of childhood; you know the ones where they are on the beach with their mom and dad are laughing and building sand castles. Mine are much simpler. Some of my favorite memories as a child were when my family went out to eat at any place with a booth. I know that sounds silly, but I loved it when we all piled into a booth at Pizza Hut or at this little place in Enid called Bob’s Cone Corner.
When I was young my family didn’t have much money, so we didn’t eat out much. Mostly our entertainment was TV and movies or outdoor exercising. As I have mentioned, Mom made sure we exercised. On rare occasions we would eat out, and those days seemed glorious. The best part of eating at Pizza Hut was squeezing into the booth with my family. There is an intimacy in a red plastic booth. Sitting shoulder to shoulder with my brother, it is was easy to tell secrets and giggle. Sitting across from my parents, gaining their full attention was not just mine but every child’s dream.
If it was a really special visit then a dollar worth of quarters were placed in our little grubby hands and Matthew and I would run to the juke box discussing who would get to pick their song first. My choice was always Eye of the Tiger, Matthew could hardly refuse. So if I had my way I would be dancing my way back to my booth, with my brother jabbing into the air as if he was hitting a boxing bag. Bob’s cone corner had a different sort of selection. Matthew and I always chose, “Just a swinging” and “Don’t touch my Toot-toot.” These songs made us giggle. My brother and I had an unspoken embargo during these trips. They were too few and far between to mess it up by bickering. Instead it was one of the rare times we would embarrass our parents by dancing and singing on the linoleum.
Later on my husband and I had a particularly cute date at a diner here in Boise. We sat on the same side of the booth nauseatingly like a romantic comedy couple. We giggled at our silliness and smooched shoulder to shoulder. It was in the middle of the sweet spot of our romance, early on when we were skinnier and first in love.
I can’t really fit comfortably in a booth. There are restaurants husband and I can’t go to because they are all booths. One of the good breakfast places here is called The Capri. They serve really hot, fast, delicious breakfast. We can’t go anymore because we can’t fit in the booths or at the counter, and it just isn’t the same to go. Have you eaten hash browns to go before…ya, not as good, right?
I know it sounds weird to try and lose weight so that I can eat out at a restaurant, but like I said some of my best memories are from there. At the time, it was one of the only things that could get two siblings from bickering. Any siblings or parents out there know there is some magic in that.