Taste of Atlanta

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Double take, my jaw drops; I rub my eyes, and look again. Yes, I’m seeing clearly! Incredible! Could I be that lucky? This coming Saturday, I’m off.

Pause for a moment…………………………………………………………………………………………I’m smiling. PM Cooks rarely get time off on the weekend. Fridays and Saturdays are usually the busiest days in a restaurant.  But this Saturday, I don’t care, I won’t be there.

This Saturday: 

a) I get to spend time with my friends

b) We all get to enjoy the sights, sounds and Taste of Atlanta

Elton and I Decide to Celebrate My Good Fortune at a Sports Bar

 On Friday, Tracy, Kamla, Elton and I decide to ditch the car on Saturday and ride the MARTA subway system to The Taste of Atlanta. What a fiasco!

11:30pm Friday night – I get off work and decide to celebrate by consuming copious amounts of cheap liquor at a local sports bar.  I’m off tomorrow, I’ll be fine, why worry.

10am Saturday morning – I’m dreaming (there’s a gigantic slush machine filled with ice, cranberry, vodka, and a couple bottles of Heineken is slowly spinning in my head). I’m drowning in this cosmic soup, when my phone rings like a lifeline. Doggedly, one hand in front of the other, I crawl in the direction of the voice at the end of the line. Sweet krispy crème donuts, my savior; it’s Tracy. She’s excited and speaking quickly. Her words buzz like a busy bumblebee; while the one-sided conversation floats in one ear like flotsam, gets sucked into my cosmic slush machine, blends in the noxious sludge, then out the other. I was able to decipher bits and pieces, which sounded like ………Tracy, had the day all planned out………………… She was on her way to the hairdresser……………………..She would pick up Kamla and meet us at the train station. “This was fine”, I mumbled, yawning, “I’m about to get up and have breakfast, see you soon,” I hang up, fluff my pillow and fall asleep.

11am – The sound of Elton moving around in the apartment becomes so annoying, I finally wake up. Yawning, I stumble into the bathroom and try to wash last night off my face. I’m ravenous and head to the kitchen, Elton is making breakfast (I don’t care what it is, in my condition, a plate of scrambled nails would be a feast).  The whirring in my head is slowing down and I sit on the floor in the living room to wait it out.

12am – Ha! Breakfast in the middle of the day, what a guilty pleasure. My appetite somewhat sated, time to shower, get dressed and head to the train station. But first, a quick cigarette break.

1pm – Hmm what to wear? Tracy calls, she’s on her way to Arts Center. I tell her “we’re about to leave the apartment” and hang up…………………… Hmmm what to wear?

2pm – Tracy keeps calling. “We’re about to board the train” I tell her. But first, another quick cigarette break. We leave the apartment; I need a memory card for my camera.  20 minute detour to CVS pharmacy. Tracy has given up on me and starts calling Elton, “where are you guys,” she exclaims,” We’ve been at the train station since 1:15pm.” She sounds extremely annoyed and states, “Its 2:30 pm, we’re going ahead of you guys to Atlantic station, call us when you get here.” Okay, fine by me.

3pm – We arrive at Doraville station, Elton buys his ticket and we head up the escalator to board the subway. Elton’s phone vibrates – its Tracy, she’s upset and Elton listens meekly for a minute, and then hands the phone to me.  Trying to sound meek myself, “Yessss.” “Jomo we took the shuttle from Arts Center to Atlantic Station but nobody’s here, what the hell is going on? “Are you kidding me,” I reply. “We’re back at Arts Center, we just found out that The Taste of Atlanta is at the Georgia Tech Center, Jomo you’re an idiot,” she hangs up. Tracy is fuming, and mentally I begin to prepare for a tongue lashing when we meet up.

3:30 pm – We arrive at Arts Center. The subway door opens and Tracy and Kamla leap onto the train. She hugs Elton, gives him a peck on the cheek. The gang is all here, it’s time to bash Jomo.  Elton, who I thought was my wingman, is the first to throw me under the bus when he reveals – I had lied about being on the train, we were still at the pharmacy.

3:45pm – We get off at the wrong station and have to walk four blocks back to the Georgia Tech center.

4:15pm – We finally arrive at the Taste of Atlanta. Elton, Kamla and Tracy swear, there’s no way they are going to spend $30 to get in (it finishes at 6 pm). We find out, it’s free to enter and walk around. However, without a wristband and tickets; we can’t sample food from the booths. Did she say free?  My friends had already bolted through the entrance and were pulling away fast. I thought about following them.  Alone, I turn back and pay the $30 entrance fee. Unfortunately, I can only share today in words and pictures, we ate all the food. In retrospect, the event was fun and we had a blast! Enjoy

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