Thursday, October 7, 2010


The weather has had a nice turn for the better today and I’m looking at some great sunny skies and warmer temps for our BICYCLEHAYWOODNC support ride this afternoon. Along with anticipating a nice ride, I’m trying out the new Windows Live Writer that I downloaded and installed…

I realized the other night that, when writing about our gustatory experiences recently on Hilton Head Island, I failed to address the worst eating experience of the trip. It wasn’t on the island itself but rather on the trip home.

We left by our 11:00 a.m. check out time and made our way on up I-95 to avoid the Sunday morning traffic associated with folks leaving the island and local folks coming and going to their churches. As we’ve done in the past, we stopped at a Denny’s located at exit 33 northbound on I-95.

DON’T MAKE OUR MISTAKE! It was horrible. We were first placed at a table directly under an air conditioning vent that must have been blowing –28 degree air. Our goose bumps looked like a miniature version of the Tetons! We asserted our right to be warmer and moved to a different table only to watch 3 more sets of folks all be put at the table and all get up and move. (You’d think management would take notice at some point…)

It took forever to get the first cup of coffee and then re-fills were non-existent. The waitress would walk right by us with a full pot of coffee and before we could wave her down, she was gone and around the corner. She had clearly been trained in the art of not-making eye contact.  When she did appear at our table, we were informed of how terrible her job was and how she couldn’t get any help. This did not generate much enthusiasm on our part.

After a good 30 minutes of waiting we finally managed to get our orders in to the kitchen. Another 20 minutes or so went by during which we observed folks moving from the aforementioned “arctic” table. Finally, the food arrived – sort of…

Part of the food was cold and the waitress dumped a container of syrup over in Sherry Shazam’s plate. Of course, she apologized and said she’d get another plate if she wanted one. S.S., being aware of the time it took to get the first cold set of food, turned down the offer and put the plate to the side. The Wood-man’s grits were way, way undercooked to the point that it was mostly just corn grit floating in water. Yuuck… comes to mind.

Meanwhile, our neighboring customer, who had asked for grits but was told there weren’t any grits, was commenting that she had really wanted some grits. Our shared waitress reiterated that she didn’t have any grits and then moved to the waitresses station where she chose to remark to her co-worker in a loud enough voice for the customer to hear… “well, I can’t bring you something I don’t have…”

So, now we're seated between one rightfully angry customer, with a table of poor quality food and a woman apparently vying for the “world’s worst waitress” award. Of course, a manager was no where to be found at that moment although the quite angry customer later found the manager was was giving her an earful as we left the area fully dissatisfied with our experience. To cap off the visit in fine style, The Navigator returned from an aborted attempt to use the women’s rest room with the report that it was too dirty to be safely used.

We attempted to warn some incoming young adults from Kentucky but they just laughed and said “ah, we’ve got a lot of time…”

Whew, now I remember why I had blocked out that experience. Travellers be aware! Don’t stop at the Denny’s at exit 33 north bound on I-95!

More pleasant stuff…

As I mentioned, our weather is beautiful today and great for combing a commute home with a group ride sandwiched in the mix. I was expecting good weather for two reasons:

1) The local weather forecaster has really been promising good stuff. (I know, I know – not always to be trusted. “Sorry sir, that 60 degree sunshine really should not look like white flakes falling and coating the roads…”)

2) Tracy, the Springfield Cyclist, reported good weather at his home yesterday and I’ve come to realize that what he has yesterday, I have today. I’ve found this to be a very trustworthy predictor of my weather one day in advance.

So, I’m only about an hour away of shifting my work schedule for the afternoon to take advantage of this great riding weather…

I’m also trying out a new feature in Windows Live Writer wherein I should be able to create a page break and improve the function of my posts. Time will tell..

Until later,

- Zeke

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