This morning I went to one of my dad's favorite hangout spots, Wheeler's. It's a pharmacy that has an old school diner in the back—it's the best. I went there often as a kid to load up on candy, buy NKOTB trading cards or get a burger and a chocolate shake with my dad. So I went there this morning for breakfast by myself (Liza was still sleeping, naturally) just to feel close to my dad, and to take a moment to remember him.
It doesn't look like much (partly because it was gloomy out and the camera fairy has not paid me a visit yet!), but the memories I have there are priceless. It's places like Wheeler's that make me feel happy that I grew up in a small city. Everybody really does know your name, and the charm is unlike anything else you can experience most places—especially New York.
My mom gave me instructions on where to sit—apparently it matters depending on the kind of dining experience you want. She said that the guys to the left are the "sharp shooters" who are always cracking jokes and talking about UK basketball (2,000 wins Woo Hoo!). Where did Dad sit? I asked. To the right, where it is quieter, she said. So that's where I sat. I still got an earful though. They talked about Christmas plans and grandchildren, but mostly basketball. And I overheard one of them say, "Hey Harvey, come sit next to me so I don't have to look atcha!" God, I love old men.
I ordered the stack of three large pancakes and ate them with zero guilt. They could totally rival the pancakes at even the fanciest brunch places in New York—I couldn't believe how light and fluffy they were! I'm sure the mix is nothing special, but there must be something the waitresses do to make them that way. Most of the waitresses have been working there since before I got a training bra, so I doubt they'll share any secrets with me. Another amazing thing is that they cook the food themselves and serve it! And, it's insanely fast.
I've always thought this sign was so cute: "Smile and have friends, frown and have wrinkles." And look at that milkshake machine—that is some old school shit right therrre.
Does anyone else have a favorite hangout spot at home? What makes it special?