By Glenn Peppers
Breaking Bread at the Golden Corral on Veterans Day
(Veterans Day! A time to honor those who have served and stood on the front lines! It is also a time to celebrate and commemorate.)
Monday night, my wife and son, and good friend, Gunar (Veterans all) and me (a none Veteran), had dinner at The Golden Corral in Clinton Township, Michigan for what was a free Veteran’s Day Dinner that Golden Corral restaurants sponsors from 4pm through 9pm, on Veterans Day; specifically for of course, America’s Veterans. And just as I expected, the lines were long (around the building type long); and it was a bit chilly out, but it was worth it. Not so much for the food, as the Golden Corral is just simply what it is; pretty decent all you can eat type wares that’s varied and tasty, and is easy on your pocket book (by the way, I was the only one who paid for dinner). But like I said, we didn’t so much come there for the food. It was more for the flocking together of good folks who have been there (so to speak), who have sacrificed, and fought battles unimaginable!
Veterans Day is a celebration for and about America’s Vet’s! So a simple all you can eat dinner for me suddenly turned into a bevy stories and funny mishaps about military travels, first weeks of bootcamp, and lonely times shared by all. This time spent with people we didn’t even know except on a first name basis was filled with all around great conversations, covered with that famous odd kinship among the many veterans (that some of us civilians seemingly just don’t get) that came out to make this a pretty interesting evening indeed for me, as once again, I am not a Veteran.
Nothing beats being around like-minded Military People who have served this country! No matter what branch, I find most all of them, personable, interesting and unique! In other words, I greatly admire our Veterans! I admire their stamina, as well as their devotion. But above all, I admire their Bravery! Tonight was like a gigantic family reunion as we all stood in line (my gouty knees and all), and waited to get inside with what could have been close to hundred folks from just about every branch of service!
When we first arrived, there was an Army Fire Brigade performing a ceremony in the parking lot in front of the restaurant. Inside and out, we met Vietnam Vet’s WWII Vet’s, Gulf War Vet’s, Korean War Vet’s, you name it! Young, Old, Male and Female! And of all the many people we met and talked to, this one little lady, Joann stood out above them all. She was all of 5′ 2 inches tall. A Vietnam vet, who served in Nam, and started her Army career in 1966!
Joann is a walking archive of army history, and experience. Lady Joann also sported army patches and insignias lining both sleeves, front pocket area, and back of her commemorative United States Army silk Jacket, which said it all! Like I said, it wasn’t the food at the Golden Corral that made Monday night so special. It was the gathering together of all these many wonderful people who fought (and some who still fight) for our freedom that made it all so special! So if you get a chance. Hug a Veteran Today! They gave it up for us, so now you can show them some love, and give it up for them as well! God Bless our Veterans!