Who knew in January and February, while rushing to do publisher duties in preparation for March 2020 release of my new book, “First We Eat. Food, Life, and More Stories” by Michele Sabad, that all events and signings would have to be postponed. A small drop of disappointment amid severe larger world problems, for sure, and a drop that can be remedied by releasing an excerpt or two for my favourite audience. I’ve chosen one that reflects my military brat experience, as of course that identity is defining for me.
“In the 1960s, a restaurant to me as a child living on military bases in either Calgary, Germany, or Goose Bay meant either: 1. a German gasthof (an inn with a pub and restaurant on the main floor; technically translates as “guesthouse”) 2. the Sergeant’s Mess… …The Mess. My dad was a sergeant, so if we went to a mess, it was the Sergeant’s Mess, always the best mess on an army base. The Junior Ranks mess was for the wild young army guys, a drinking place for those hooligans to hang out at. And the Officer’s Mess was snobby. The best mess was always the Sergeant’s. Most sergeants were established family men, and I can’t tell you when or where I first had a restaurant meal at the mess because they were pretty similar on every military base we ever lived. Nice long tables with white tablecloths and thick heavy white plates. Multiple glass types: for Father’s beer, our water, and smaller ones for juice or milk. Very heavy cutlery, including sharp knives, which my brothers would use for swordplay, although to be fair, we were all quite well-behaved at the mess. It had been a rare treat we dressed up for.”
This excerpt is taken from the “Restaurants” chapter. Other chapter headings include : “Drink, Drink” ; “Family Mush” ; “Christmas at the Office” ; and “Casino Wednesday”. Those who’ve read my first book, “Camp Follower One Army Brat’s Story”, will recognize the style – short stories and accompanying illustrations. I’ll end this excerpt release with the first review I received from a “verified Amazon customer” :
“Book read! Read it in bed last night. Not good to be hysterically laughing at 12:30AM! Spitting in coffee cream at work! I nearly wet the bed! Was a good read. Memories surged with reminisces of days past. From my perspective, job well done….once again.🥰🥰😆😆😆🎉🎉🎉💐💐”