In our local Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down column, a contributor (or perhaps more than one) has rightly pointed out that we must shop locally in order to support remaining businesses and maintain our much-dwindled tax base. When we moved here, I knew that shopping would be a challenge. When Dollar General is the biggest game in town, with the loss of the small Walmart, I was sure I would be going out of town for a lot of what I thought I needed. Six months into my new home, I have changed my tune. There really is a lot here. My recent shopping experience in Jonesboro proves my point.
I had never been to Jonesboro before this past Friday and I came away with a good impression. It has a mall - with a Barnes & Noble!!! - a couple of Starbucks, a coffee place called Shadrach's, several boutiques and specialty stores, and a downtown that has a good look to it and tasty pub grub at Godsey's. I came away from my Jonesboro adventure with a couple of lessons. Number one was "Yes, you CAN shop locally; and number two was "If you want an actual lunch at Godsey's, don't order the Triple Dip Appetizer unless you are with at least 8 people". Since there were only 3 of us this day - Beverly Tipton and Glenda Hazel - the appetizer as lunch was an immediate foregone conclusion.
And, while I enjoyed the experience of exploring the boutiques and specialty stores, I couldn't help but think about places like Lux and Luv, The Globe, and Kathy's Bootheel Tees for clothing. I also thought about Riverside Stationary and the surprising collection of gifty items Kara offers there. And Hayden's has some good choices too. I'm especially interested in Kathy's because, though I'm a three times grandma, I'm a new first-time grandma of a granddaughter and omigoodness, the wall of clothes there. I was in grandma-to-a-baby-girl heaven. Local shopping coming up. The Globe already has The Pirate as a regular patron, and pretty gift items are readily available at Kara's and Hayden's. I know there must be others, but I haven't found you yet. Be sure to give me a shutout and I will come visit. So yes, Thumbs Down folks, I shop locally. And if there was a bookstore here, I would not be shopping at Barnes & Noble either. But when you love books the way I do, well a girl has to do what a girl has to do.
But, by far, the kicker of the day was our coffee experience at Godsey's. It was funny as, well, you know, or maybe you just had to be there to really get it, but here it is.
I ordered a glass of White Zin, my go-to drink and followed it up with a cup of coffee with cream. Glenda did too. Coffee arrived. Two different mug designs. Considering what happened later, that should have been a clue. Anyway . . .
Cream arrived a bit late and it arrived in one of those little plastic dipping bowls you might get a side of ranch dressing in or maybe barbecue sauce. The second clue goes right over my head. Glenda and I shared the wealth of the dipping bowl, tasted the coffee, and CHOKED. We didn't miss the third clue. It wasn't cream; it was some vanilla flavored thingy and it absolutely ruined an otherwise perfectly good cup of coffee. Neither Glenda nor I like sweet coffee. Beverly, on the other hand, was good to go and she took mine. Glenda sent hers back and we waited for fresh cups and plain old cream. Well . . .
Our coffee did eventually arrive -- in 20 oz styrofoam cups that were half full. The server could not find any mugs and Glenda's had already gone into the dishwasher. The whole situation was so ridiculous that we couldn't help but laugh. Beverly primly sipped from the mug I had surrendered to her and I eyed the styrofoam cup with great suspicion. Then I considered the possibilities of the wine glass. Hmmm. I tossed back the remaining wine and poured the coffee with cream into the glass. Bev and Glenda stared. Then the hilarity of the moment grabbed us. Of course, I had to document the moment and I took a picture of the coffee in the wine glass. I didn't notice until later that Beverly was also in the picture and she was cracking up.
Two things emerged from this tale of the precious bean. (1) it was the best cuppa I had ever had. Who knew laughter and a wine glass would be the magic ingredients to improve any coffee to the point of perfection; and (2) When you go to Godsey's and you know you are going to order coffee, bring your own mug.
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