As much as I love being with Stormy, I was reluctant to leave the thousands of things that I had to do at home and join him in Mobile, Alabama for a a VERY few (1.5) days of vacation. He was in school there for a week and insisted that I come on down, so in spite of my reservations (or lack of them depending on the definition) I headed out Thursday evening. A last minute airline ticket ($$$$$) got me only as far as Nashville, TN before violent thunderstorms stopped me in my tracks. Stranded and losing precious time that I should have been spending in Alabama, I pulled myself together, got a room and determined that I would somehow get on a flight to Pensacola before we were to fly back on Saturday. I’m sure my sunny attitude (and the $$$$ I paid to get that ticket) were all instrumental in my discovery that I already had a seat on the first flight out Friday AM. I had been told the night before that I would not get out until 6:00pm Friday.
Once in Pensacola, everything improved. I returned to Mobile with Stormy, dropped him at school and headed out to Fairhope, Alabama. If you don’t know anything about Fairhope, then I strongly suggest that you read a book called The Noticer Returns. I received it as a Christmas gift and the lovely story is set in Fairhope. The town was every bit as magical as the book described and I thoroughly enjoyed my visit which included a bout of retail therapy for which Fairhope was especially well equipped.
While trying to decide where to eat and where to park, I asked for help from a lovely lady named Jean who was strolling along the very long pier in Fairhope. She told me that Panini Pete’s where they make their own sandwich ingredients including their mozzarella cheese was the absolute best place to eat. But she cautioned me that I would never find it on my own. No, she didn’t have the insight into my personality that most people take weeks to develop, the restaurant was just very hidden. She lead me to a well camouflaged parking area, then down several alleyways to a peaceful patio with a lilting fountain as background music. There she said that all I had to do was sit at a table and I would be served. Although I could not persuade her to join me, I did recommend to the server that she find out who Jean was and be sure to take good care of her. The food was incredibly flavorful – who knew home made mozzarella makes such a difference!
I can’t say enough about all of the dining experiences I had in this area. The Fire Grilled Oysters at the Original Oyster Shack was Stormy’s favorite. On the way to the Fairhope airport we stopped for lunch at Big Daddy’s where the view of the river and the mouth watering sandwiches made us want to never leave.
We spent 3 hours Friday at NAS Pensacola visiting the National Naval Air Museum. Wish we had a few more hours to take in this huge and amazing museum. We did not have time to see the other sites on the base including a lovely lighthouse where you are allowed to climb to the top for a spectacular view and Fort Barrancas. I hope we can return to this area so I can EAT and sightsee (okay and also probably shop).