If I learned two things about Chris’s family it’s that:
a.) The ONLY Connie’s worth going to is the one on 22nd in Chicago
b.) They are creatures of habit.
a.) Is most definitely true. Connie’s became a gathering place for us. We had birthday celebrations there, graduations were celebrated there. It was a love that began when his parents were in their teens, dating. When his mom was too sick to go out, he would pick up a couple of the par-bakes, take them home, and have us all over rather than going out.
Connies was the last place that I saw Adam alive. We were celebrating Chris’s birthday. It was like every other celebration. Chris and Adam goofing around, daring each other, making plans, talking sports. A couple weeks later, Adam was gone. I’ll always remember him there, in those moments. Goofy conversations, plans for the future… I wish that they would have come true.
b.) Patio. A simple restaurant, with a simple menu, for those that like simple things. Chris’s dad and Chris– the world’s pickiest eaters. The Patio was easy, a simple idea on a night when Chris can’t decide what he wants. We’ve gone there numerous times with his family. We threw his dad’s 60th birthday party there. When Chris and I first started dating, he would list to me (before we got there) what soups they had on Friday night. Creatures of habit, obviously.
In August of 2012, in the beginning of the month, Chris and I decided to go to Patio on a Friday night. I looked at him and said, “What if we saw your parents here?” He told me that we wouldn’t because it was too late. Sure enough, there they were… sitting at a table, waiting for their food to arrive. We joined them at the table, sat down for an impromptu dinner with his parents. Creatures of habit, right? They eat there almost every Friday! It was the last time I saw his mom outside of the hospital. It will always make me think of her.