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Blue Heron in flight

Saturday, June 8, 2024

In our memories

 


I was sad to hear that Chris, the longtime owner of Main St. Cafe and the original Fallbrook Cafe, has passed away at the end of May. He was known to people of our town as "The Greek." Chris was in very poor health and went back to Chicago a few years ago to live with his daughter and family during the last years of his life.


I loved Chris and he loved me. He took exceedingly good care of me. He would make me the best egg salad sandwiches I have ever eaten, which were off menu, in his own phenomenal way, warming the egg and mincing celery on the bottom. Same with his chicken salad. Whatever I wanted, Chris would make and he could cook exceedingly well although he usually left it to his workers. But not for me, Chris would cook it himself.

Chris had a gruff exterior but once you got to know him, he was a marshmallow. If he liked and respected you, you would get the shirt off his back.  His voice was a growl and his accent was thick.

He had a great sense of humor. The native Greek enjoyed talking about his youth in the old country, where he played soccer before coming to America. He worked hard all his life and took justifiable pride in his restaurants.

He would often crack me up.

Once at Fallbrook Cafe, where I spent most mornings having coffee before work, I had ordered oatmeal and saw some strange mold or something in my little paper cup of raisins.

I complained to him. He looked at me straight in the eye, grabbed the cup and chugged them all down his throat in one quick motion, then slammed it down on the counter, never taking me off of his steely gaze.

I shut up and then we both started laughing. I never bitched again about anything.

I will miss the Greek.

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It just so happens that I had lunch at Main St. yesterday. I had not yet heard about Chris, didn't hear the news until this morning. But I was talking to Sue and mentioned that all those old people walking around town, that would be us before we knew it. Depressing but true, it all happens so fast. Enjoy life while you can.

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I was also sad to hear that Tip Top Meats in Carlsbad is closing down this year. Nothing else like it, end of an era. The late Big John made it tick.

1 comment:

Ken Seals said...

It's sad to hear about Chris's passing :-(