We’ve all heard the saying “Old Habits Die Hard”, and we all, begrudgingly, know it to be true. I’m proposing a newer and more positive version. One that is quite appropriate for the story I’m about to tell:
”Old Traditions Live Strong”
For Father’s Day the three of us Hipple girls decided it was time to wake up an old sleeping giant from our childhood. It would seem that I’m alluding to my dad as said “Giant”, but lucky for him, I’m not. The Giant I’m referring to is a long lost Hipple Tradition, a Sunday ritual that was a huge part of our lives.
With three little girls running around playing and giggling in the house, Sunday mornings proved to be quite a battle for mom to get ready in time. We stormed all around like tiny tyrants asking every five minutes “is it time to go yet”, something had to be done. Mom really needed an extra 30 minutes of sleep, and some peace and quiet to fluff up her hair and apply her makeup. A genius plan was put into place.
Dad would wake up early and take his three little girls to breakfast before church and then meet mom there when it started. I didn’t know it then, I’m not even sure my dad did, but this plan would become a most treasured tradition and notable time in our lives.
This weekly outing made sure we always spent quality time with our Daddy; where he taught us to be extremely goofy, to share our hearts openly, and to realize how important family is.
Breakfast was always at the same place, with the same friendly couple greeting us with a smile and “How are you”, and the same four orders. Dad always got exactly the same thing, corn-beef-hash, over medium eggs, and rye toast with orange marmalade. They have the best pancakes in town (in my biased opinion) so my plate always had two big cakes, over-easy eggs, and sausage links. Ellie usually got the same but with bacon and hash browns. Jessica was older and more mature so she got one of the various cheesy omelets. Of course there was also one order of black coffee, 2 hot cocos with whip cream and a cherry on top, and some other random beverage to Jessica’s specifications. (I always thought she was nutty for ordering anything else when dad always let us get hot chocolate.)
HUGO’S was our spot, owned by Choi and Chang, a most wonderful and joyful pair. Lucky for us it’s still there at the Casitas Plaza in Carpinteria with the same owners to this day. This Father’s Day we were able to enjoy yet another Sunday breakfast with our dad, a tradition I hope will live on for many more years to come.
What fun it was to eat good food and reminisce on old times together.
On this Sunday I ordered coffee and smiled to myself remembering that it was in this place that I sadly found, through many trials, that hot coco gives me a terrible tummy ache. When my order of pancakes arrived I remembered another funny fact. I turned to my sisters, “Remember how many times Dad told us that even though they put a big delicious slab of fluffy butter on top, you don’t have to use the entire thing”. All three of us broke out in laughter thinking how bummed we used to be when half of the butter was swiped off our plates.
Hugo’s holds a sweet place in our hearts. It’s a place where you can feel at home. There’s even a wall dedicated to Christmas cards, pictures, and newspaper clippings. You can still find a few Hipple faces taped to it from many years passed.
Eating here this time made me realize that it’s important to have a place to come back to.
“Old Traditions Live Strong”