Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Stocking up to Leave Alabama

Monday last we started to get ready to leave Alabama by putting up the awning, putting away the outside chairs and tables. We did stop to all go out to lunch at a wonderful place The Lindas first found in Florida, called The Firehouse Subs. What a treat! It was started 14 years ago in Jacksonville, FL by two brothers who were firefighters. Now they have 350 places in 17 states. The inside is set up pretty much like a Quizno, counter on the left with red tables on the right.

The decor is red and white with firefigher memorabilia all around.

Here Linda B. got Jim a child's meal fire helmet for fun. Linda S. said we should have placed Jim on the other end of the axe so it would look like he was getting his head cut open - that would have been a cute shot - oh, well.

The meat subs are steamed to heat them which makes them very moist. Jim and I split a large sub and with a drink and chips it was $10. The subs are named "Hook & Ladder", "The Engineer" and "The Firehouse Hero". Pretty much the best sub I have ever tasted!

After lunch we all headed out to Billy's Seafood in Bon Secour west of Gulf Shores by the water. Jim and I have spoken so often about Billy's Seafood that everyone wanted to go with us to buy seafood for the freezer.
I've posted photos of Billy's before, but this time I was bright enough to take photos inside.

The folks there even posed up some of the fish to make a pretty picture. We bought two pounds of the extra large shrimp, two pounds of small bay scallops and a pound of Red Shrimp, which they said taste a lot like lobster. They even showed us how to snap the heads off after you cook them. Mmmmm good information. The Lindas bought some Ling fish which they said wasn't too fishy tasting and Bill and Lesle bought some alligator chunks. That's different...yes, it DOES taste like chicken. The Lindas stopped at Walmart and bought what I call "the sucker". It's Reynolds Wrap's Handi-Vac, which is a "must have" in our rig. It is really good to use so you don't get freezer burn on your frozen items.
On of the first nights we arrived in Summerdale we went to the clubhouse and were looking around for a place to sit and we were waved over to join two other couples at their table.

There we met Dave and Claudia McGhee
and their friends of 31 years, Don and Barb Williams. Since that first night the eight of us have gotten together often to play cards. We taught them "hand and foot" and they taught us "dealer's choice". They have been very welcoming to us and we all got along famously. They certainly made our stay at Summerdale very enjoyable.

Knowing we were going to leave on Tuesday Dave suggested we all go out to dinner to a ""different type of buffet", as he described it. Well different it certainly was. The Gift Horse Restaurant (as in 'don't look a gift horse in the mouth fame') is the most elegant restaurant buffet I've ever been in. Built in 1912 to be The Foley Progressive Club, the clubs membership consisted of a "group of men, the founders of Foley thought the town needed a place to hold concerts, dance, and cultural events."
The building has beaded pine walls and ceilings. The building has been an American Legion hall , the USO Club during WWII, housed several hardware stores, and a skating rink.
In 1984 the MacLeods bought it and made extensive renovations to include leaded stained leaded glass and large brass chandeliers.

The serving tables have elegant warming vessels; the plates are heavy china and the tables are decorated beautifully.

The selection was limited but oh, so good! They had shrimp, crab legs, stuffed crab, mullet fish, praline sweet potatoes (Jim ate this till he was silly), broad beans and their signature apple and cheese casserole. Oh, my, that was unusually wonderful. There is a thing called 100 Places to Eat before You Die-Alabama and Gift Horse Restaurant's Apple Cheese Casserole is one of the items. Also on the list were Key Lime Milkshake at Stacey's Old Tyme Soda, Panini Pete's and Lambert's Throwed Rolls-we ate at all those places also.
After dinner we all went to the clubhouse and played cards. It was a full day doing so many things and very enjoyable being with friends all day.
Remember - you are loved!

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