I had to pull out of Cape on March 4 in order to make it back to West Palm Beach by March 6. As usual, I got a late start. No departure would be complete without taking a final photo before backing out of the driveway.
I think I’m getting better at these photos. Either my arm is getting longer or Mother and I are shrinking in our old age, which makes it possible to get us both in the photo.
Headed across the bridge
This is an appropriate bookend to the trip. I posted a photo when Friend Jan made me turn around to get the bridge and the moon in a picture the night we pulled into Cape.
Atlanta skyline and traffic (what else?)
I left Cape in snow flurries, and woke up in Manchester, Tenn., to rain. By the time I got to Monteagle Pass, the rain had turned into a monsoon and the winds were threatening to blow me across two lanes of traffic. It was hard enough to stay on the road in my Odyssey van. I don’t know how an empty 18-wheeler could have handled it.
I hoped to get an Oink Moo Burger at Dave’s Modern Tavern, but it wasn’t open. A woman in a nearby business recommended an Italian joint just down the road. Their pizza was excellent. Just as I was switching from my eating glasses to my seeing glasses to pay the bill, the left side of the frame came apart and dropped my lens on the carpet. Fortunately, there was a CVS drugstore next door where I could buy a replacement screw. A helpful women at the checkout counter put the screw back in for me since I couldn’t see to do it.
All of this piddling around put me into Atlanta at rush hour. I hadn’t planned to take another photo of a traffic jam in my favorite city, but we were stopped and the skyline was interesting. I think all the cold weather may have caused the lube in the camera mirror mechanism to stiffen up. I had a few frames with dark tops a couple of days ago, and the gremlin struck again here. While I wouldn’t mind some kind of out-of-this-world General Sherman coming down to devour Atlanta, that was simply not happening here.
Crawfish at Bubba Jax
I get odd cravings on the road. For some reason, I had a hankering for Dairy Queen’s chicken strips with white gravy and a Blizzard for desert. A sign promised at DQ in Valdosta, but I couldn’t spot it. As luck would have it, I opted to make a U-turn into Bubba Jax Crab Shack. It was a nondescript kind of place, but there was a fair number of cars in the lot, so I decided to take a chance. A chalkboard at the entrance said they had a special on crayfish.
I love Cajun forms of crawfish, so I placed an order without asking how they were served. While waiting for my order to arrive, I saw plate after plate of lightly battered fried oysters and onion rings walk by. I was wondering if I had made a mistake.
When the server placed a bunch of red shells in front of me, I was sure I had. “This is embarrassing,” I confessed. “I’ve shucked oysters, peeled shrimp and cracked crabs, but I’ve never tackled crawdads before. How do I attack these beasts?”
She said, “I’m not exactly sure. I know you eat the tails and some folks suck out the insides from the top, but they’re not exactly my thing.”
When she came back, I suggested that she put these on the menu as the Dieter’s Special “because you burn more calories peeling them you gain in consuming the critters.” I got better and faster, but I sure wish I had ordered the oysters. I’m going to put crayfish on the list of things like crunchy rock shrimp I’m going to avoid as being too much work.
Lunch with the grandsons
While I was out of town, Grandson Graham turned 2, and Elliot was added to the family on February 4. Parents Adam and Carly asked if I wanted to meet them for lunch at a hamburger joint on March 7. Are you kidding? This was my first glimpse of Elliot. I’d have shot more photos except that he was sound asleep. I learned with Graham that you do NOT want to have a screaming awake baby on your hands. I had forgotten they don’t come with a mute switch.
Graham’s a big boy now
There’s nothing like having a newborn in the family to make a two-year-old look like a big boy. It’s incredible how much more he’s talking than when I last saw him about six weeks ago. Grandson Malcolm, who is eight, is almost as tall as his grandmother, and looks like he’s going to be asking for the car keys in another week or two.
Graham, even after getting a spit-shine from his mother, is still wearing a significant portion of his lunch. (You can, as always, click on the photos to make them larger.)