Bruise Cruise Pt. 3: Long Highway, Don’t Care

On Sunday morning, Ami and I were up and at ’em early to get our butts on the road to Tampa! We met up with Evan at Thumbs Up Diner for a hearty breakfast to fuel us through our 7 hour drive. Thumbs Up is famous for having really long wait times, but luckily restaurants don’t tend to be too busy at 8 AM on Sunday, so we were seated right away.


We had an amazing waiter (a theme whenever I’m in Atlanta – people in the south really are nicer!) who refilled our coffee every two minutes, bless him, and liked us because we were “real coffee drinkers” aka drank it black. What can we say… Also, Evan ordered two slices of French Toast expecting it to be regular sized bread. NOPE. These slices were as thick as they were wide, and he did a very impressive job of tackling the behemoth in front of him.


We waddled out of the restaurant and into Ami’s convertible, where we lathered on sunscreen and performed our usual driving check: windows/top down, music up, feet out the window. I assumed my role as DJ, navigator, and teller of bad jokes as we zoomed out of Atlanta and straight down 75 south (forever).

This was literally the most boring drive ever: just trees. Nothing pretty to look at, save for the occasional billboard and cute guy in a neighboring car. We snacked on baby carrots and apples, waiting to cross into Florida to break for a proper lunch. And by “proper” I mean we got a 10-piece chicken nuggets from a Wendy’s and split them while we called our dads (happy Father’s Day!). Once our nuggets were gone, we gassed up and got back on the road.

We finally pulled into Tampa at around 5 PM, making our way to our hotel. I had scored an awesome price on a really nice hotel for the night (thanks, Travelocity!) but forgotten the fact that everything else would thus be expensive, too. See: $4 bottle of water on the nightstand. Tap is fine, thank you!

Once we were settled and showered, we walked down the road to a Seasons 52 that we had spotted earlier. This was one of those restaurant experiences that we’ll never really forget: first, the waiter thought that our IDs were fake when we each ordered a beer. He was suspicious that mine was Virginia and hers was Georgia, even after we explained that we were both from Virginia but went to different colleges. He went to fetch our beers, but returned a few minutes later demanding to check the expiration date. He still wasn’t fully convinced, but brought our beers anyway, which we now needed.


We placed our orders, and he came back a few minutes later because he had forgotten what Ami had ordered (I really thought this was why they had notebooks, but maybe they just journal and write poems? Any waiters out there to confirm?). This whole scenario is set to soft piano covers of Adele songs, performed live in the middle of the bar. After our meal, another waiter came by with a sizzling dish of shrimp that he offered us. At first we thought it was a condolence for the ID fiasco, but neither of us likes shrimp, which we let the waiter know. Apparently someone had ordered it and he had just forgotten who – so he went around to several other tables until he finally found the rightful owner. It was all very, very weird, and we couldn’t get out of there fast enough.

It’s very uncharacteristic of us to watch tv, but they were there, so we tuned into some America’s Funniest Videos (people are stupid) and Family Feud before calling it a night. We had a cruise to get ready for!


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