Our couple hours started off by meeting at the Country Squire. Del was fortunate enough to find a house tobacco blend that seemed to suit him nicely, and a local'ish beer to accompany it. "Not hoppy," he said. I, on the other hand, took the hoppiest thing I could find. We had a smoke and stories outside on the patio. Things were going wonderfully up until this point, but it was then, upon my recommendation of a place to eat in Louisianan, that things began to sour.
After mentioning the name of the restaurant, Del immediately began to inquire of its whereabouts. To which I obliged him with an answer........only my answer was found to be unsatisfactory. Hurriedly, at first, Del began to converse with Siri as to the "real" location of this eatery. "That can't be right," he mutters in my direction, but not actually at me directly. "I've been there a few times personally. I assure you that's where it is," I offer in attempts to quell his growing anxiety. "THAT CAN'T BE RIGHT!" he exclaimed. Though this time while staring directly at me...no...through me. Clear through into my soul, he stared. The air temperature rose easily by two degrees simply from the friction created by the frantic movement of his fingers across the screen of his phone. Hands shaking. Zooming in on the map. "That's nothing but a lake. It' can't be!" he continued. With heart felt concern for Del's emotional state, I phoned my father, and with it on speaker I asked him where that particular restaurant was located. He proceeded to confirm my original statement. "A lake...nothing but a lake...it can't be...my precious"
Though unconvinced, Del did a fine job of tucking away his obvious desire to strangle me with his belt. This may have been simply because I had promised him some BBQ, maybe the non-hoppy brew had begun to calm him down. I only know that whatever the reason, I am thankful for it as I was, for a brief moment, but "brief" in the sense that it is spanned only a second but seemed to stretch out for years over that single second, I feared for my life.
From the Squire we took off to a local BBQ joint where along the way, Del, who was obviously not at all trusting of my navigation skills, proceeded to pass me and drive in the wrong direction. By God's grace I was able to steer him back on course and we were pulling into the parking lot in about 5 minutes...not the 15 that his gps had told him. Del and I both had pork belly and collar green sandwiches, while his wife opted for a more traditional brisket. Not the greatest restaurant, but not bad either. I will say this though, it was all made to be a top notch afternoon due to the fantastic company.
Del, it was a pleasure. I wish I could have stuck around longer.