So, I'm back here in wonderful Columbus, GA. I mean, really, if you have the means, I highly recommend it. Really, and there is no sarcasm here. It's just Heaven on Earth down here.
Aside from the heat. And humidity.
Now, here's a funny thing about Columbus, GA. They have two Applebees. Maybe some people are fans of this place, possibly because of their great salad bar. But as white trash restaurants go, Applebees is right there on the top of the list. Some might say Waffle House, but since I think Waffle House is simply awesome, I can't label it as such.
Moving on. The title of this post is an inside joke for everyone who has ever heard me talk about Basic Training. Something happened while I was there which became a source of amusement for me, all of my teammates, and pretty much anyone else I talked to about it. So, if you've heard it, skip ahead.
It was the last week of Basic, everyone had relaxed a bit, and I was on an early morning ice run with my drill sergeant. (No battle buddy, that's what happens at the end of Basic). I know my family is coming down, and all the restaurants the senior drill had recommended for family day were, well, bad. (Golden Corral, Red Lobster, Applebees) My father likes good food. Not necessarily white linen $100 a plate food, but good food. So I ask my drill sergeant if there are any nice restaurants in Columbus I can go with my family. His response, and I SWEAR TO GOD THIS IS TRUE, was "You mean besides the Red Lobster?" I love this story because it sums up the general attitude and background of almost every drill sergeant at Basic Training. Call me elitist, I don't care, but when Red Lobster is your idea of fine dining, there's something not quite right.
So, this evening, I need to run out to Kinkos to print some stuff up, and I figure as long as I am out, I will get some real food to eat, and I look up local restaurants to find something decent. I'm not looking for anything really nice, by the way (not Red Lobster nice, at least), so I end up going to TGI Fridays. Which happens to be, you guessed it, right next to the Red Lobster. And a Chili's. And a Barnes and Noble. Frankly, this TGI Fridays is in The Biggest Strip Mall Known To Man. This strip mall was so big, they had a Sears. It literally trailed off into the distance so badly I couldn't see what was on the other side of the Sears. It was like one of those big Mills Outlet Malls, but outside instead of in (I guess Georgians like the heat so much they hate the idea of walking around inside an air conditioned building while shopping). There was a Carabba's, an Olive Garden, a couple other decent places. And one of TWO, yes TWO! Wal-Marts in Columbus (I think that might be for a different blog, though).
So, maybe I misheard my drill sergeant. Maybe he didn't say "Besides the Red Lobster." Maybe he said "Beside the Red Lobster."