The egg sandwich

LUNCH TODAY consisted of two egg sandwiches.

I hadn’t eaten an egg sandwich in years, much less two at a time, but I was hungry. I ate both sandwiches alone.

There were two reasons I made the egg sandwiches. One is that I was cooking for one, and it’s easy to do. The second reason was that I wanted to try out a new frying pan that I bought recently at Bed, Bath & Beyond in the capital city.

cracked-eggThe pan is copper-based, and it requires no oil or butter whatsoever to cook eggs or anything else. It just does not stick, slides right off. Sweet.

I ate alone, and I likely will spend the night alone too, but that’s okay, especially considering the circumstances.

* * * *

THE CIRCUMSTANCES

We have a nephew with cancer. It was discovered a year ago, late, and he’s been getting chemo down in the capital city at a government hospital.

Fortunately, he has medical coverage due to a new job he found — driving a wrecker on the autopista — not long before the cancer was discovered.

We’ve been driving him down there almost every week for the past year, waiting for two or three hours, and then bringing him home. The problem began in his testicles, but that was solved rather quickly with surgery.

However, it spread to his lungs where a number of tumors took up residence. The chemo seemed to be helping.

Recently, he began suffering severe headaches. A CT scan last week revealed the lung tumors were all gone. Alas, they had traveled to his brain, six of them.

He will not live. He is 31 years old, married with two children, 6 and 10. He was brought home from the hospital last week in an ambulance, and he’s been bedridden since.

The doctor said he may go blind, talk nonsense and other bad stuff. He seemed to be semi-conscious.

In the middle of last night, he began convulsing. His wife — and brother who lives next door — called an ambulance and returned him to the hospital in the capital city.

That’s about 40 minutes down the mountainside.

This morning at 8:30, we got a phone call, and we drove to the hospital. I left my child bride who expects to spend the night in the hospital. Tests are being done on the nephew.

I drove home alone and got hungry shortly after arrival. It was a good time to test my new copper pan.

The sandwiches were whole-grain bread. I applied Dijon, lettuce, spices and Worcestershire sauce.

I am counting my own blessings. When you’re feeling low, an egg sandwich can be a good thing to lean on.

40 thoughts on “The egg sandwich”

    1. Thanks, Al. After I wrote this post, I went downtown to have a coffee on the plaza and admire the tall fir trees. My wife phoned me and said the young man is in extremely grave condition, and his wife and brother have told the doctors not to do anything more. Won’t be long, it appears.

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  1. I said a quick prayer for your nephew. I hope providence takes its course without anguish. An egg sandwich can be a comfort on a lonely evening.

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  2. I feel very sad for you and your child bride’s family. Metastatic cancer is the bane of every family’s existence whether they currently have a loved one suffering or they carry the thought of it happening. Such a young man and the young family will be so lost without him.

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  3. That’s a tough road to travel. My sympathies for the struggles of the family.

    On a lighter note, you can get those super copper pans in the U.S. without going to the store. They’re just $19.95, and for a limited time only they’ll include another one absolutely free! Of course you have to pay shipping and handling,

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    1. Ray: The peso price I paid was about $25 in U.S. cash. Not bad. I’ll just stick to the one I have. We don’t do all that much frying in the first place.

      And, yes, the other matter is a tough road. I’ve only personally known two people in my life who have died of cancer. Both were after my move to Mexico. This nephew will be the second. I knew folks up north with cancer, but none of them died from it.

      The first down here was a Gringo, age 79, a very good friend. He chose not to have any treatment at all, and he never seemed to suffer much. Just grew increasingly weak till he died, apparently peacefully.

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  4. Sorry to read this sad news. I’m sure the family appreciates you and your wife driving him for treatments for the past year.

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    1. Connie: I imagine, but we did it because it was necessary. He started out with five treatments a week, and there were other relatives and friends chipping in, so everyone was doing just one day a week. When the chemo sessions were reduced to just once a week, my wife kinda volunteered us, so we kept it up. Made sense because we are the only ones without steady employment.

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  5. I don’t “Like” this but did want to comment … not sure what to say except that I did read your post, and it does make me stop and think of what I have and am grateful. Prayers for him and his family.

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  6. I am deeply saddened by your nephew and family. Reading this made my heart hurt. I hope the pain and suffering ends soon. If egg sandwiches are your comfort food, eat them and enjoy.

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  7. Felipe: I’m so sorry about your nephew’s condition. May he pass quickly and peacefully. At this point, that’s about the best blessing one can hope for. My prayers go out to his widow and children.

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    Redding, CA

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  8. This is a difficult post to respond to. I am sincerely sorry for the agony you and your family are enduring. However, at this time we should think about the future of the children and the widow. Hopefully, your nephew has his estate in order.
    We all should have wills in place, and they should be available when needed. Death comes to us all eventually. Be prepared. Make your wishes known to family and friends. It does little good to have a will if it cannot be found when needed.

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    1. Señor Gill: “Estate” in this case is stretching the meaning of the word. Things will fall into place one way or the other, which is common down here. There was no will. Be assured of that.

      Heck, even I have no will. I own nothing. Everything is in my wife’s name.

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  9. Wow…so sorry amigo…he is in a much better place….wherever that may be. Fried egg sandwiches were my dad’s favorite meal….only on white bread with butter and lots of salt and pepper…take care my friend…it’s been a while…

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    1. Hi, Charles. Glad to see you’ve not blasted off into outer space.

      I didn’t used white bread for my sandwiches. I know white bread is what they used in the old days, but that was because it was about the only bread available. We have wider options now, and I’m glad about that.

      Yes, my nephew is in a better place, wherever that may be.

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  10. .

    A couple of years ago my wife ordered an electric pressure cooker after watching one of those infomercials on TV. I gave her a lot of grief about it, saying we would probably never use it. Now I refer to it as MY pressure cooker. Last month my wife ordered the 4″ copper-infused cooking pan and, yes, I gave her grief about it, saying that it would probably not perform as advertised. I now refer to it as MY copper-infused pan. Egg sandwiches are now back in my life. Best wishes to you and your wife’s extended family.

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    1. Señor Bowman: You’re a funny fellow. And egg sandwiches are back in my life too, which I like, especially now that the official line has returned to “eggs are not bad for you” once again. God knows how long that will last.

      And thanks for the best wishes.

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  11. My lady friend in Mexico survived breast cancer last year, only to find it came back in another form. It just seems to seek out the weakest link in the body, and attack there. She is young and very beautiful, and it makes me sad. Sorry for your family’s loss. May he rest in peace.

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    1. Thanks, Bob. It’s a sneaky affliction for sure. Finding it early seems to provide the best chance of beating it. Alas, my nephew ignored it too long after it was initially misdiagnosed by a freebie drugstore physician.

      Got my fingers crossed, figuratively speaking, for your lady friend. I wish her and you well.

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  12. Felipe, so sorry to hear of your loss! Cancer is such a horrible disease. It can strike anyone, anywhere. My prayers of comfort are with you and your family.

    On a lighter note, your comments about egg sandwiches brought back good memories from my childhood. My step dad used to make he and I egg sandwiches to pack in our lunch buckets. I worked for him in the summers doing remodeling work.

    Troy

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    1. Troy: I got a real surprise today. The funeral. It was one of those Mexican things where the people walk down the street. It was my second here. We walked about half a mile in the sunshine. The surprise was the number of participants. It was incredible. There were likely over 200 people. I don’t believe in the pretty long time I’ve lived here and the considerable number of funerals I’ve seen passing that I’ve ever seen one so big. After we left the Basilica where a Mass was held, instead of putting the casket in the hearse that had brought him, the pallbearers walked the entire distance with him on their shoulders. And there was a Mariachi band.

      My wife had always told me that Jaime — that was his name, Jaime Palomares — was a popular guy, but I had no idea. It made quite an impression. And it wasn’t because he was any sort of big shot because he wasn’t. His whole life he just did odd jobs, anything he could find. He even lied to get his last job as a wrecker driver on the autopista. They asked when he applied if he could drive a wrecker, and he said yes, even though he had no clue. They kept him on when they found out he didn’t know. He learned on the job. He was special, one of those people who would give you the shirt off his back. He had a motor scooter that would have looked perfect in a Mad Max movie. It was a total wreck because he would loan it to anyone who asked. His friends would dump it, and he’d keep loaning it to them.

      I first met him when he was about 17. Now I wish I’d known him a bit better. He was very likable.

      About the egg sandwiches, I had not eaten one in a long time. Now I would like a grilled cheese sandwich too. I cannot recall my last grilled cheese sandwich. Probably been decades, literally.

      Thanks for the feedback.

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  13. I am sad for you. Cancer is awful. I am older and have lost a number of my close friends to it. If I have to deal with it I will do as your friend did – nothing – unless it is painful and then just something for that. The egg sandwich was a good choice. Comforting food. Peace.

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    1. Hi, Beth. Don’t know why your comment went to the moderation line. Perhaps you used a new email address. Or maybe you’re a different Beth! No matter.

      I’ve only encountered terminal cancer up close and personal in people I know well twice. That’s quite enough, thank you. Peace to you too.

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  14. Looking back here for an update. I am very sorry for your loss. Hope life will treat his family well. Last night I received news an old friend from my younger years had passed away. Mind you he was 67. I know him from the creation of the first band he played with. Eventually he played with April Wine, so I think he had a pretty good life. Your nephew was robbed. I have always played it safe and done what was expected of me, but I think I might just throw caution to the wind and start living for myself. If we head to your ‘hood we will buy you a coffee and maybe an egg sandwich!!!!! Enough exclamation points for you? Cheers.

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    1. Shelagh: Update, eh? I considered writing an entire post on the lad, treatments (he did “alternative” medicine too), his death, and the funeral, but I decided against it. Instead I just kind of slid into the topic with this egg sandwich façade. I’m not sure how the Mexican kin would react to my putting this online, if indeed they even spotted it. They don’t speak English. A niece whom my wife doesn’t much care for in the first place, starting weeping all over Facebook about the matter, and it really ticked my wife off.

      If you pass by the mountainside, no need to buy me a coffee because I get them free at my sister-in-law’s coffee shop. I’ll be glad to share a table with you, however. As for buying me an egg sandwich, I’ve never seen one in a restaurant here. Kind of a Gringo thing. A cafecito would have to do.

      As for playing it safe all the time, I recommend you let loose. That’s what I did 17 years ago, and it was the best decision of my life.

      Cheers to you too.

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