File Name: Lawrence.psd

Source:

File Type: imageText: Lawrence and I were very close. I was more like a mother to him than a sister since our mother had become bedridden with a heart condition. As a young girl, I was in charge of the household. When Lawrence moved to Chicago to become a professional entertainer, he would call twice a month following his last performance of the evening to ask if he could bring his show business friends to the house for an Italian meal. He didn't mean next week - he meant as soon as he could get to Madison by car from Chicago. Such phone calls were usually made about 11:30 pm. I'd make a quick call to Mr. Reda, wake him from a sound sleep, tell him what I needed at that awful hour and by midnight, I'd run over to the market to pick up freshly ground beef for meatballs and slices of steak for the Brociolone. He always smiled. Being Italian, he understood spur-of-the-moment midnight entertainment. I'd grab the packages and hurry back home to begin the preparation. By three in the morning, the sauce, meatballs, Brociolone, spaghetti, salad and bread were ready to serve. Bottles of red wine were brought up from the basement just about the time the guests were to arrive. There were usually about six to eight of them and for the next three or four hours the dining room was filled with compliments and gaiety. By daybreak, the party would end and they'd head back to Chicago, hoping to return soon to the Greenbush neighborhood and our house on Spring Street. Once, just as I had completed a similar meal, they called to inform me that their car had stalled on the highway and they would have to cancel. I was a little upset, but what could I do? I put the food away, left the table set as it was and went to bed exhausted. Three hours later, my children got up for school. They came downstairs and got all excited when they saw the table set up as it was. They thought we were going to have a party. Rose Salerno Barbato

Linkages:
Family Name: Barbato
Themes: Foodways Mealtimes
Location Name: Spring

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