By MAGGIE M, Editor, Wedgee-in-Chief, theWedge.LIVE
“You’re gonna sing with Joe,” I directed. “No way!,” the Andress couple answered in chorus.
“Don’t worry there’s no sound in a photo,” I replied without eye-rolling. In no time flat they joined Joe Murphy, Manager of SAP, full-bore. They clearly enjoyed their karaoke moment, long after the camera stopped “rolling.”
It was the day to celebrate our togetherness. Picnic tables were out. Food was on the grill. Condiments were at-the-ready. The place bubbled with chatter and movement.
No digital devices were in sight. Just people talking, laughing and eating.
You see, food brings us together. And Andress Your Independent Grocer in Smiths Falls hit some high notes with this truly social move. It is amazing to witness how many customers the Andress’s know well, and by first name.
This fun Friday at Andress’ was nutty, fun and delicious, as usual. They dubbed this day “#eat together” day. It appears their counterparts also celebrated across Canada.
Students from Smiths Falls District Collegiate Institute under the direction of art teacher, Rebecca Soudant, painted a table expertly to commemorate this day. I hope it stays in place so we can munch our take-out meals together with strangers and friends all summer long.
“HASHTAG EAT TOGETHER!,” Steve Akeson howled intermittently. He is the store’s weekly foodie personality–and now, the Food Crier. On this wet Friday he was Mr. BBQ too. Andress was serving up hotdogs, bottled water and freezies, all gifts on this lovely, overcast, windy, rainy-about-to-pour-buckets day.
I chuckled, wondering if internet neophytes among us would be looking for hash (the meat kind.) Alas hashtag is a mere keyboard symbol that takes you to endless posts from people across Canada talking about finding each other through food–not their devices. #eattogether is a timely message.
“People didn’t sit down and relax at our picnic table,” Dan Andress remarked incredulously. “They ran to their cars with their hot dogs.” It wasn’t that they didn’t like the singing trio or even my camera. The sky drizzled, blowing-in sideways–wetting their buns figuratively and literally. Even my camera wore a raincoat. That might be the reason.
The sky withheld its epic scene until the moment I hopped into my car. Yet, the singing continued as I drove away. The Andress show must go on.