Let me start out by saying that I live in a very small town, but I have lived in and often visit nearby cities. I'm finally getting used to small-town life again (I grew up in a small town, but moved to a city after college), but there are still things that I miss from cities: nice movie theaters, variety in the grocery store, shopping centers, festivals, events, culture, and RESTAURANTS!
Most Saturdays, I drive about an hour to run with friends who live in a nearby city. We met several years ago when we all participated in Team in Training, and have been friends ever since. I don't mind driving that far because it's early AM so there's not much traffic, and it gives me an excuse to get things at stores that we don't have in my town.
I ran 10 miles with Anna on Saturday, and as we were finishing up I asked if she'd been to the new Ukrops yet. She said she hadn't but that she was thinking about going after we finished running. Since I'd been wanting to check it out too, we decided to go after we cooled off and stretched.
I don't think I've ever been in a nicer grocery store! They had all kinds of all-natural, organic things (produce, cleaning supplies, soaps, shampoo, lotion, vitamins, etc.). They had so many things that I'll ever be able to get in my small town. And there was enough ready-to-eat food to consider the place a restaurant as well as a grocery store! I saw pizza, sandwiches, typical deli stuff, soups, salad bar, dessert bar, cheeses, sushi, and the list goes on and on.
I suggested to Anna that we get something to eat and take it upstairs on their deck. And since it's been so long since I've had sushi, I couldn't resist even though it was only 9:30 AM. I bought some spring rolls and california rolls, and surprisingly, Anna thought those were great choices and got the same thing! I don't know many (any?) other people who would eat sushi that early on a Saturday morning!
So we took our food up to the patio on the 2nd level and chose a table overlooking the traffic circle coming into the parking lot. Talk about entertaining! I grew up in a town with a traffic circle, so I know how to go through one. And Anna knew all about them too, so we laughed and laughed at the people who had obviously never seen one before. Several people ignored it completely and made the left turn into the parking lot instead of going around the circle. One person drive down the wrong side of the median and then went the wrong way through the circle. And one person actually got it right and merged in behind the car that was going around the circle.
I had such a great time Saturday morning, with an incredible 10 mile run, excellent food, awesome company, and amusing drivers. We might just have to make this a Saturday morning tradition!