Good morning, and Happy Thanksgiving from Ocean City, Maryland.
I'm posting from 205 miles from home base. That's not a personal best: On August 22, 2009, I blogged from Cambridge, Massachusetts, 245 miles away. I would very much like to break that record. Maybe my finances will soon turn around and make that possible. (When I did it from Cape May, New Jersey, 2 Thanksgivings ago, that was 130 miles.)
Someone told me that Royal Farms, which owns the naming rights to the old Baltimore Civic Center arena, was the Chesapeake region's answer to Wawa. Well, this morning, I made my 1st visit to one, and bought a breakfast sandwich and a lemonade, and walked over to the beach to eat the sandwich.
I was quickly eyed by a flock of seagulls. Not "A Flock of Seagulls," the early 1980s new wave band from Liverpool with the stupid hair. (At least their leader has a name that caught my attention: Mike Score.) Actual seagulls. I took the picture above, and, as you can see, they looked ready to pounce on me and my breakfast. And I've been told that seagulls are mean.
"How mean are they?" Well, on Labor Day 2004, I saw a pigeon and a seagull have a tug-o-war with a slice of pizza on the Boardwalk in Atlantic City. (Shades of New York's recent Subway "pizza rat.") And the pigeon won. The city bird beat the suburban bird. So, not that mean.
I glared at them and said, "Forget it, birds, this city boy ain't givin' ya squat."
They didn't rush me, but neither did they back down. Maybe, to drive home the point that I'm a suburban boy but that "I identify as a city boy" (though neither born nor raised nor ever having set foot in anything that could be called "South Detroit"), I should have called them "boids."
Anyway, I enjoyed my Thanksgiving beach sunrise, and took my 1st-ever bite of that Middle Atlantic States (but not really New Jersey) pedestrian delicacy (pedelicacy?), scrapple.
They also sell a Spam, egg & cheese sandwich on croissant.
Not ham, Spam. And scrapple sliders. And, as you can see,
scrapple on bagel. That cannot possibly be kosher.
Royal Farms works with Cloverland Dairy, whose headquarters is a few blocks from the site of Memorial Stadium in Baltimore. So their drinks are good. Their lemonade is nearly a match for Wawa's.
But, no, Royal Farms is not the Chesapeake region's version of Wawa. More like their version of 7-Eleven. Not just in level of quality, but they don't have the specialty sandwiches, bowls or drinks. At least their ice cream is cheaper -- but that could be a regional difference (as in, they're further from super-expensive New York), rather than a brand difference. I think the person who told me they were equivalent was thinking of the fact that, like many Wawas but unlike every 7-Eleven I've ever seen, Royal Farms stores (including the one at 8307 Coastal Highway in Ocean City), has a gas station.
Anyway, after my wonderful lunch yesterday at the British Chip Shop in Haddonfield, New Jersey, and my spectacular dinner last night at Bull On the Beach in Ocean City (do yourself a favor: Go to both -- but not in the same day, which would vastly increase the risk of a heart attack), my next meal, the scrapple sandwich, was a big disappointment.
T-shirt design sold at Bull On the Beach
Happy Thanksgiving, may your Alma Mater win (if they play today, or this weekend), and may your Thanksgiving dinner (and mine) be better than my breakfast!