The LuLac Edition #1014, Nov. 21st, 2009
PHOTO INDEX: OUR INTERVIEW LOGO.
With Thanksgiving coming up we had a chance to sit down with a person who volunteers to serve turkey dinner to the elderly and poor people in Lackawanna County.
Q: How did you get started doing this?
A: I lost my husband to pancreatic cancer in 2005.
A: Tell me about it, he suffered greatly and I was really, really mad. So on the holidays I made sure my family knew I was occupied, my grown kids included and feasted by myself.
Q: On what?
A: Booze. I drank myself into oblivion starting Wednesday night at 9PM and didn’t stop until Saturday night.
Q: What was your booze of choice?
A: Oh I went first class. Bottles of chardonnay, Robert Modavi and then to really knock myself out a couple of Tylenol PM. By Saturday night I was so sick I couldn’t, wanted to die myself.
Q: Did you eat anything at all?
A: Yeah ironically turkey. I bought one of those big ass subs at Wegmans. Then for dessert I had a tub of ice cream. That was my Thanksgiving dinner.
Q: When did you stop doing this and why and how?
A: I started to feel really guilty because I was being selfish. My kids thought I was dead once when I couldn’t answer the door so I stopped uh, excuse the pun, cold turkey.
Q: Ever think about drug and alcohol agencies? AA?
A: Naw, I think they do more hard for people than good.
Q: When did you start to volunteer and how did that come about?
A: I was walking home one night and I saw this mom and two kids. They were pretty disheveled and the kids were screaming because they could smell the pizza and wanted some.
Q: Whose pizza?
Q: Oh man great stuff.
A: Yeah I know. Anyway the mother was saying we just need to get in there and get warm, use the bathrooms and then move on.
Q: What did you do?
A: I stopped, opened my purse and dropped a ten on the ground. I was so scared to death that it would blow away. Last November was nothing like the mild weather we are having this month.
Q: I know, I was getting chemo last year and the cold was terrible.
A: I then started to walk away and began to really, really cry, and it was all guilt.
Q: Then what?
A: I called one of the United Way agencies and they directed me to a center where I could help on Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Q: You’re a hero then, right? I think you are.
A: No, not at all. I’m coping but in a good way. I have dinner with the kids at a restaurant after my shift and it’s all good now.
Q: So no more drinking on Thanksgiving Day anymore?
A: Not alcohol. I drink a lot of water. That kitchen gets hot with all those steaming potatoes and gravy.
Q: No more Wegmans subs and ice cream?
A: Nope, back to the traditional stuff. But I wait until the people I volunteer for eat their food. It’s only right.
Q: No sneaking any little bitsy samples?
A: Maybe a spoonful, that’s it.
Q: Happy Thanksgiving, you’re back!
A: Yeah I’m glad.