BoJangle’s Famous Chicken & Biscuits

We took another mighty fine family vacation this year and as we did last year, we went to the Outer Banks.

And as we did last year, we stayed over night at Beckley, West Virginia rather than driving straight through as we did the first time going to the Banks. (Will never do that again !!)

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It was a pretty good drive.  9 hours and 21 minutes with just a couple of quick stops at the Speedway gas stations in Greenfield, IN and Chillicohte, OH for gas, snacks and bathroom breaks.  The weather was fine and there were no traffic issues of note.  I have a new car, as my last one was totaled in an accident and one of the really neat features is that I can plug my phone into it and use Giggle Maps with GPS !!!  I used to print up maps and mark out any major intersections or turns and the such, but this is a real game changer.  I think the best part is it I can see traffic issues on my route and plan accordingly.  That came in very nicely on the drive home.

On the the trip home the previous year we stopped at a “Bojangle’s” restaurant.  The family still says that it was the best chicken at any fast food place we have ever had !!  So on this trip, I made sure to map out all of the Bojangle’s on our route and as luck would have it, there was a new one in Beckley, WV !

“Bojangle’s Famous Chicken and Biscuits”

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Oh was that GREAT !!

I did have to wait a bit for my order and the pretty girl added a couple of pieces for my time.  As great as the chicken is, the biscuits are even better.  The fries are good, but because they are seasoned fries, I can’t call them great.  Now, truth be told, for dinner I just ate the fries and my biscuit, hard to believe, but I really didn’t have much of an appetite.  The good news is, I finished the chicken on the next day’s drive to the The Banks and gosh darn if that chicken is just about as good cold as it is hot.

 

 

 

 

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Tesla Fails !!! (Again)

 

Tesla Fails (Often)

Tesla Fails (Still)

Tesla Fails (Of Course)

This list could go on for a very long time.

When your business model is based on a product that few people want, few people can afford and only exists because of tax payer subsidies, it’s going to be hard to be very successful.

“Tesla Model 3 Delivery Delayed Again”

“The new Model 3, crucial to the company’s success, won’t hit full-scale production until the end of June, Tesla said last week — nearly a year after the company began manufacturing the car in small numbers.”

“Throughout last year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk trumpeted a production level of 5,000 a week by December 2017. In November, he pushed that goal to the end of March 2018. Now that target won’t be hit until the end of June. The electric-car maker said in an online statement January 3 that it expects to produce 2,500 a week by the end of March.”

“Only 1,550 Model 3s were delivered in 2017’s fourth quarter. That’s on top of the 220 Model 3s the company delivered in the third quarter, for a total of just 1,770 since the first deliveries in late July.”

 

Goal of 5000 a week and actual delivery of 1550 for a quarter.

Missed it by that much……………

 

Tesla can best be summed up with this Monty Python bit:

Weekend At The Park

The park, aka my brother’s backyard:

https://bacontime.wordpress.com/2017/09/17/another-day-in-the-park/

https://bacontime.wordpress.com/2016/10/04/sunday-afternoon-in-the-park/

Sadly, this was not a fun day, but a work day.

There is a crick that runs between my brother’s property and our dad’s.

They buried about 500 feet of it and we needed to build a head wall to contain high run off.

Oh, what’s a “crick?”

A crick is a small body of water between the size of a creek and a garden hose.

This crick a hundred years ago had a dam built across it to be able to hold water for making ice for the ice house on the farm.

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My job for the day was just mixing the concrete.  Not a difficult task at all.

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We started at 8 am this is how far we got by about 10 am.  My brother thought we would be done by 11.  My dad had to make a run to the hardware store for more concrete so we are doing a little prep work for the right side wall.

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Mini Ho in action.

My brother works for a plumbing company and has access to all sorts of really cool equipment.

 

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ALL FINISHED !!

But, we were not finished by 11 am. This was a freak weather day for September 23rd in northern Illinois.  It was 90 degrees and 80% humidity by 10 am and none of us could go past noon.  So we started again the next morning at 8 am and we finished up by 10 am.

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A little fine tuning with the tractor.

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Almost done.  Some grass seeding and it will be great.

Story.

I am fairly embarrassed to admit that I failed miserably on that Saturday of work.

By 10:30 am I literally felt like I was going to collapse from fatigue.

One of the problems was that I skipped breakfast.  Another problem is that apparently I’m not 30 years old and in tremendous physical shape.

Going way back to when I was 30.

I used to work construction until I blew my back out and couldn’t do that work anymore.

The center fielder on our softball team was a couple of years older than me and I remember one game night he showed up and said, “Man am I tired.”

His job was being a buyer for a major department store so all he did all day was sit at a desk and make phone calls.

I told him this was my day:

Up at 5 am, physical labor until 3 pm, home by 4 pm,eat, go to the gym and then play two games of softball and I would be glad to play two more games every night.

Man, those days are long gone !!

 

Rain Barrel

My wife has always wanted a rain barrel and she finally got around to putting the effort in to purchase one.

She purchased the rain barrel from The Conservation Foundation:

http://www.theconservationfoundation.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=247&Itemid=200106

It was about $60 and from what I was told, it had been used originally to import olives.

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So this is where the rain barrel is going to be located.  There are two downspouts on the garage. (the other is in the backyard.)  Every decorative rock in my yard was brought there by me.  The picture does not show it very well but most of the rocks shown are blueish in color.  That’s my favorite rock color.  I do not know what kind of rocks they are because I really did not pay attention in Geology class in college !!  I also make things out of concrete and the bowl there is one that I made.  It is there for a birdbath and we get plenty of birds in our yards using the plethora of bird baths I made.

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Step 1:  Remove the rocks.  I have other spots in the yard where they can be used.

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Step 2:  Excavation and forming.  Not too much to it, dig a hole !

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Step 3:  CONCRETE DAY !!!  When I worked construction years ago, concrete days were the best days.  I forget how many bags of Quickcrete I mixed up but mixing and finishing only took about an hour.

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Step 4:  Strip the forms and a little landscaping.  I let the concrete cure for a couple of days and had the finished concrete covered with a small piece of plywood so the rain wouldn’t erode the newly finished concrete.

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Step 5:  Place the rain barrel.  It is placed on a platform about 12 inches high to get the watering can underneath it easily.

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I had to do a little work on the downspout.  There is a nice screen on the ingress of the rain barrel to keep out debris and insects.  We shouldn’t have any concern about stagnant water and mosquito larvae !!

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I had a piece of old damaged 5/8 inch garden hose that I cut for the overflow.

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This is the “Rain barrel” that I’ve had in the backyard for a number of years.  The yellow bucket is normally next to the black one to hold the overflow.

 

Bacon Vacation 2016 !!

Yes, this was from July/August 2016 !!

 

This was another unusual year in that I again took two consecutive weeks of vacation. And thank God that I did !!! We were in the middle of a project at work that without a doubt was/is/will be the worst assignment I have ever had with this company. The timing of my vacation ensured that I would not be involved in the last two weeks of the project.
The first week of vacation we would be at home and so I took a lot of frozen meat out of the freezer to cook during the week and use that as an opportunity to clean out the freezer a bit.

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Mmmmmm, frozen meat.
Now the bad part is that my brother had a graduation party for his son and daughter and there was a bit of leftover, uncooked hamburger that was sent home with me. So along with the above frozen meat, I now had an extra 12 hamburgers to cook and eat for the week. And to compound the overmeatage situation, my daughter ended up being gone with a cousin for four days of that week.  But I did manage !!

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The previous year when we went to New Bern, NC, we  (I mean me) drove straight through.  That was way too much driving and this time I bit the bullet and stayed at a hotel coming and going.  I don’t like adding an extra $200 and two days to the trip but had to do it.

We stayed at a nice place in New Bern and the town itself was great for food and walking around in, but it was an hour each way everyday to get to the beach.  Not a big deal but it did put limits on being able to be more spontaneous and such.  So I decided that regardless of what the extra cost would be, we were going to stay on the island and be closer to the beach.   It didn’t take long to figure out that there were some nice places to stay, but most were designed for large family’s or groups.  When dividing the cost per family, it’s very reasonable (even for a cheap bastard like myself.)  Soooooooooooooooooo I had the idea to suggest to the wife that we have her brother’s family in DC and her parents meet use on the island for a family vacation.

I knew well ahead of time that there could be a great downside to that idea.

We ended up with:

Mother in law

Father in law

brother in law

sister in law

nephew

Aunt

Along with the three of this us.

It wasn’t without difficulties, but it wasn’t too bad !!

I hundreds of pictures of our beach trips but most of them are about the same so I’ll just post a few:

 

 

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Food:

On vacations, I usually don’t eat more than one meal a day.  This year because we were with the rest of the family, we mostly bought groceries and made dinners at our beach house.  But we did eat out a couple of times when we were far from the beach house our just to dang tired to cook.

The year before we ate at “Howard’s Pub” on Ocracoke Island and we did the same this year.

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I ordered the “Po Boy.”  Just like last year’s lunch here, it was great !  Very fresh and not at all greasy.

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Shocking but my daughter ordered the chicken tenders.

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The wife ordered a crab cake sandwich.  Big chucks of crab.  Yummo.

Bros Sandwich Shack:

It was around  2 pm one afternoon and we were coming back from somewhere we decided to get a sandwich at Bros which was about a mile away from where the beach house was.

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Those were both $10 sandwiches. The service was very slow and the sandwiches were “meh.”  Doubt I would recommend it or go there again.

Bojangles:

On the trip last year and this year, once we got to the West Virginia area, I saw a lot of billboards for “Bojangles.”  We didn’t stop last year but did this year on our return trip going through Princeton, WV.

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I got the “Roasted Chicken Bites.”   Dang, they were OK but for some reason I thought they were going to be BBQ.  But, the biscuit?????  FANTASTIC !!!!   I could have an entire meal of just the biscuits.

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The wife and daughter both got the chicken tenders.  There are very few times when eating at a fast food chain that you can actually say “WOW!!” when you eat something.  But by an agreement with all of us, these were literally the best chicken tenders we had ever eaten.

Activities:

Of course finding sea glass was on the agenda at all times.  More was found this year than last year but there still was not a lot found.  This was the best piece found:

2016_Seaglass

 

The Sister-in-Law found a DNR program that let people seine in the Pamlico Sound and they explained what we caught.

2016_Palmico Sound

Pamlico Sound is very warm and shallow.  There’s a good chance that you could walk from Hatteras to the mainland.  It’s a great place for spawning water life.

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Here the wife and daughter are seining critters.

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The marine biologist student explains what was caught.  She looked at me funny when I asked if there was any drawn butter.

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My daughter and her cousin out trying to catch more.

Things we brought home:

What’s a family vacation if you don’t bring home some crap??!!??

Actually we didn’t bring much home with us.

The Hatteras Island chain has more tourist trap stores full of chintzy spoo than anywhere else except the Wisconsin Dells !

Some bacon related Examples:

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Does everyone have a crazy cat lady in their life?

 

 

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A couple of great six packs.  These were each $10.99.  On the high end but really good beer.

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One of the best souvenir places we stopped at was “Scotch Bonnet.”

They had some really good Taffy.

 

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Also while in Princeton, WV where we stopped at Bojangles for lunch, we went to “Jerky Outlet”.  The bacon jerky was good.  The crickets really didn’t have any taste other than “crunchy.”  My daughter ate two of them.