Dishing up hot dogs in honor of ‘mama’

Published 6:39 pm Tuesday, May 19, 2020

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Until now, not one from the Millennials to the centenarians had experienced the coronavirus pandemic.

So, COVID-19 has, in many ways, bridged the generation gap.

Under a variety of “stay home” orders, family members have actually talked and listened to each other.

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Young people have actually found what their elders had to say was worth their time.

On Tuesday, Emily Bryan “shoved down” a foot-long chili dog with all the trimmings in memory and honor of her great-grandmother who once “slopped” ketchup, mustard and chili sauce all over her best dress and her whole being on one of the happiest days of togetherness her grandmother, Pat Rogers, can remember.

Pat and her sister, Geraldine, own and operate Sisters Restaurant on busy U.S. Highway 231 south of Troy.

When COVID-19 forced the closing of the restaurant, the sisters had time to reflect on day’s past and predict the future of their restaurant.

“We didn’t know if we could come back after being shut down and, if we did, how would we do it?” Pat said. “But, we had plenty of time to think about it.”

During all that thinking time, Pat said she remembered one of the happiest days she and her mother, Juanita Golden, spent together.

“I took Mama to a doctor’s appointment in Dothan and she was all dressed up,” Pat said. “Back then, we dressed up to go to the doctor. We don’t do that anymore.”

Upon leaving the doctor’s office the ladies’ backbones were meeting their stomachs. Pat asked her mama what she would like to eat.

“Mama said she wanted a hot dog — a foot-long with chili,” Pat said. “I didn’t want us to eat chili dogs in the car but I stopped and got us one and Mama started right in eating.”

Pat said before she could even bite her dog, her mama had ketchup, mustard and chili sauce all over her face, running all down her, all off her, all under her. She was covered in everything except the wiener, which she had managed to eat.

“Mama was the funniest-looking thing. We started laughing and we couldn’t stop,” Pat said.

“I can still see Mama laughing and remember how happy we were. Life was so simple back then. That day is one of my favorite memories of Mama.”

On Tuesday, sisters Pat and Geraldine held to their promise that they would open Sisters Restaurant again if all they could serve was hotdogs. And, they did so “in memory of Mama.”