the golden corral

Last week we visited Dominick’s grandparents, Emory and Esther, in Georgia. They recently learned that Emory has cancer. They were meeting with their doctor to get the scan results (to see how far it had spread), and to discuss treatment options (if any were viable).

Emory is a man of few words. He likes life’s simple things, and most of his conversations are about just that. He told us a wonderful story about seeing their neighbors’ horses in the night:

“I went out over there where the ground dips and I didn’t make a noise. Then I heard clop-clop, clop-clop, clop-clop.” (He gestured a slow, gentle rhythm for the horses’ hooves.) “And I looked and looked and finally I could see just the bare outline of two heads looking right at me. So they ran over the whole field in the pitch dark to come see me, because they knew I usually gave them carrots.”

Esther is much more talkative. She’s a classic southern lady. I use that word, ‘lady,’ very deliberately. Not everyone has the right manners to merit the word. She praises God at every opportunity. This is what complete thankfulness looks like:

“When we married, I asked God to give us just 10 years, and now He’s given us nearly 15 wonderful years together. Isn’t that amazing?”

Yes, it sure is.

Well, they found Emory has stage 2 cancer, and he started chemotherapy that same day. Emory sat in a big recliner, and his only complaint was boredom. Afterwards, he said he wanted lunch at the Golden Corral. (This is a buffet restaurant with an abundance of fried food – the Ponderosa of the South. We’d successfully dodged eating there before, but this time we heartily agreed. We’d go wherever Emory wanted to go.)

During lunch, Dominick told Emory his new favorite joke:

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Why don’t you ever see elephants hiding in trees?
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Because they’re really good at it!
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