Recently I experienced a very special day that will remain in my memory forever. This was the day I went to have potluck lunch with the senior citizens at their little center in one of the remotest rural areas in Letcher County.
To begin with, this was one of the warmest, coziest, blissfully happiest places since my childhood. These wonderful seniors made me feel as though I had gone to my grandma’s for lunch. Everyone was smiling and just happy to be together. No one had a negative reply for anything being discussed around the quilt so beautifully bound in its frame.
The dining tables were surrounded with card players laughing and singing Loretta Lynn songs. The aromas coming from all the food being brought in by the seniors was causing a loud rumbling in my stomach as I longed to taste the chicken and dumplings prepared by the hands of a little angelic woman whose smile would melt the Statue of Liberty.
Believe it or not, we had a gentleman make a kettle of his special dumplings that could be put up against Betty Crocker’s recipe. The food prepared by all the seniors were country borne exquisite recipes handed down from one generation to another.
The thing about this little center is when you go there, you feel as though you are going home for a visit. When you walk into the room, one of the things you might notice first is all the pictures on the mantle. These are pictures of special people who attend the center, or have passed on but are not forgotten. Time stands still when you are surrounded by the comforts of home.
Even the employees welcome you with open arms. There is a rapport between seniors and employees impossible to break down.
The ultimate heartwrenching moment of the day was when the site manager, Cathy Ingram, asked each senior to tell what they were most thankful for. There were so many beautiful statement of thankfulness that you had to be made of cardboard not to cry.
When it came to the employees stating what they were thankful for, all I could manage to say was, “I concur with what they are saying,” and added with gratefulness, “my job.”
If you ever find a need for the nurturing of a grandmother, gone but not forgotten, please stop by this little center and have a homey visit for the day, and you will go home satisfied.