Home > Uncategorized > Richmond Hill, Georgia (Henry Ford summered here!)

Richmond Hill, Georgia (Henry Ford summered here!)

Yes, supposedly it is true. At least that’s what the billboards say, but this is again a motel town. Nothing here but motels as far as I can tell. And cheap gas because the gas is really cheap in Georgia, $1.25 a gallon! I wasn’t going to stay in Georgia just in case there are outstanding warrants for my arrest from wild lawless college days in Atlanta. But then I got tired and it was dark and rainy, so here I am!

Now let’s get in the way back machine to Saturday morning as I am leaving Lake City, Florida. First stop was lunch at Chick-Fil-A. Mmmmm….. Today I bought a Chick-Fil-A cow – it is their mascot. The cow usually says “Burgers Suck. Eat Chikin.” This cow, however, was purchased in Gainesville and is a Florida Gators cow. He wears a little placard saying “Go Gaterz” on the front and “Watchin Pigskin. Eatin Chikin.” on the back. Cute, I guess. It comes in other college teams – my friend Ben (who will be hosting me tomorrow in Chapel Hill) bought a Tar Heels cow. This particular Gainesville branch also sold the Seminoles cow (Florida State – their arch rival) but sold out two cases really fast, apparently to UF fans who wanted to deface them in some way.

Back on the highway and I begin to see a series of billboards that say “WE BARE IT ALL. 24 Hour Cafe. Good Food.” Darn it all, I just ate! So I didn’t check out the topless restaurant. And I now how much you wanted me to report on it.

Many hours later I arrive in West Palm Beach at Ibis. This is a gated golf community, a popular item in West Palm Beach (as well as the rest of Florida). You buy a house and a golf membership and you can play on a course that you partially own. At least that is the concept. This particular development is new enough where the course has not been turned over to the members yet. Most of the residents are seasonal and I don’t blame them. I don’t know who’d want to live in South Florida in the summertime. My air conditioner is in need of a recharge (I believe – it could just be broken) so it was not comfortable for me. But one step into my cousin Marilyn’s house and “mmmmm…..processed air.”

Marilyn and I talked Vegas and football and computers for a little while and then headed out for the Crazy Buffet. This place advertises itself as an upscale Japanese Buffet which I assumed would be an awful lot like Todai (TODAI!!!!) However it was not – like Todai, it had an extremely impressive collection of sushi rolls. However, it did not much else in the raw fish family at all. Plus, instead of being straight Japanese food, it is a mish mosh of Asian buffet staples. It had a Mongolian BBQ going and big steam trays full of East Coast style Chinese food appetizers. The food was really really good. There were two problems with the place, but not enough to turn you away from it if you ever end up in South Florida. One is that they give you silverware and you have to get chopsticks off of the buffet. This is upscale Japanese?? And the other thing is that the desserts suck. I mean they really suck. After Todai’s crepes . . . well anyway, that was dinner.

After dinner, I wrote one of my journal entries and then went to sleep without setting an alarm. So many many hours later, I woke up sometime on Sunday. Marilyn and I went to brunch at the club at Ibis. They have a dress code, so I actually had to do some ironing. The brunch was extremely good. There was an omelet station and a custom pancake station. I had never seen one of these before. There were chocolate chips, blueberries, strawberries, bananas and nuts and you could request a pancake! I had strawberry/banana pancakes!!! Plus I got there just as they were putting out the new tray of eggs benedict!! Whoo hoo!

So it sounds like all I did in West Palm Beach was eat . . .well . . . hmmm . . . OK we did other stuff. Marilyn asked me to help set up her computer for the internet. What she had was a laptop in a docking station and a 14″ monitor. So I fired that sucker up and . . . error messages. One after another after another. Finally I stop the error messages from coming up only to find she’s got a Pentium 133 machine. Talk about obsolete! I asked her if she wanted to buy a new computer, and she said yes!!! So we went computer shopping!!!

First stop was Brandsmart USA which is this gigantic superstore with bright florescent signs all over the place, idiot commissioned salespeople and crazy theft procedures. I bought a CD there and they actually SEAL it in the bag before you leave the store. This way you can’t drop a bunch of CDs in your bag between the register and the door? Marilyn tells me WPB (West Palm Beach) is a high crime region, so I guess these techniques were necessary, but still – they seemed a little extreme.

Next stop was Best Buy which Marilyn hates because it takes so long to get service, but I knew what we were looking for. And what we got was the same computer we had seen at Brandsmart and at the same price. So we bought it there along with all the necessary cables and parts. (OK not all of them – Marilyn is still working on the Palm Pilot thing because the power backup device is using the serial port and I bought the wrong adapter for the Palm Pilot at Radio Shack, so maybe I don’t know what I’m doing). Anyway, in case you care, it’s a 1200 mhz Athlon with DVD and CD-R and 128 Megs and fancy video and audio card and 17″ flat screen monitor and . . . lots of stuff. Then we took the thing home and we set it up . . . and by now it was 8 oclock at night, so it was time to eat again.

We went to some Italian restaurant – I don’t remember the name, perhaps Carbella’s or Carella’s or Cardello’s or Cardani’s or Carvaggio’s – I am pretty sure it started with a C and ended with a vowel. The food was excellent – it was a good choice – best veal parmesan I have had in ages. And after dinner was more playing with the computer.

Monday, Marilyn had to go into the office, so when I got up, I decided to go out and do some stuff. I had gone to a couple of cool bookstores last time I was in town, so decided to go back to them. They were closed of course for the holiday. Then off to a CD store I had visited before and that too was closed for the holiday. So instead of shopping, I went back to the house, watched Karate Kid on HBO and did my laundry. “You’re the best around, nobody can ever keep you down.” You’re all right, Larusso!!!!

One of the main themes of this particular weekend was my next job and hometown. So I entered a new contender onto the list. Possible job? Blackjack dealer. Possible locations? Eastern Connecticut or Las Vegas. Please consider and discuss.

Now it turns out that my cousin Jane (who I was to be staying with on Friday in Washington DC) was vacationing in Key West and flying out of Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday. So Marilyn and I convinced her (not hard) to come up for dinner. So she and her friend “Linny” (no idea on the spelling) drove up and we went out for dinner. Where would we go? Of course Marilyn wanted Cheesecake Factory, but I am still boycotting them after my experience getting a stick inside of an eggroll. But after turning down the other restaurant choices at City Place, I made an offer. If they pay, I’ll go to Cheesecake Factory. That way I am giving them another chance while not supporting them.

They passed the test, but it wasn’t easy. First thing I ordered was a drink while waiting for a table. I got a Tom Collins, which has gin and club soda and lemon juice and sugar. This Tom Collins also had black flakes, perhaps dirt, perhaps coffee. Jane’s Grey Goose Martini Dirty Straight Up (I think) also had black flakes.

“Um excuse me but there are black flakes in our drinks.” I let Jane do the talking

The bartender, obviously not a bright light then replies, “Well it’s probably in the ice – our ice machine is broken so we are getting our ice ordered in.”

“Well can we get new ice and try again?”

“Well it will be the same because the ice will be the same.”

So of course we gave the bartender back the drinks and went to our table without paying for them. As soon as the waitress came to our table, Jane asked for the manager. The manager got us new drinks on the house and assured us that he had taken care of the lazy bartender.

We ordered a ton of food and it was all very good. There was quite a bit of sharing of the meals and the desserts were all fair game all around. My dessert was the tuxedo cheesecake, which was so good that it in itself might have been enough to lift my boycott. But it was the tremendous all around service we got even though we were there for three hours that has made me willing to go to the Cheesecake Factory again, although I am not sure if this includes the Las Vegas location or not. But the West Palm Beach one is safe.

After dinner, we went over to my Uncle Bert’s house, also in Ibis. He and my Aunt Barbara had driven back from Atlanta today. I think they made the drive in one day both because they had been on the road for five weeks and they were so close and because they could have a brief visit with Jane and me. So we had the brief visit. And somewhere in there, Uncle Bert asked:

“So do I get to read your report on the Cafe Risque?”

“The what?”

“You didn’t stop? The ‘we bare it all’ billboards?”

“Well I had just eaten . . . ”

And so I had disappointed one of my readers by not stopping in the nudie diner. I hate disappointing my readers!! After this visit, I discovered that my cell phone has an alarm clock and I set it for 8 in the morning so I could get an early start out. I was going to spend a little time in St. Augustine, the oldest city in America.

And of course I did, but it is late and it will wait for another journal entry. Also in the next entry, I get another chance to go to Cafe Risque . . .

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