When I checked out of the Red Roof near Hagerstown, MD on Thursday morning, I asked the desk clerk if there was a good local place for breakfast close by. Well, he said there was one that had been around “forever,” but it was probably four miles away. Called The Railroad Junction, it’s a place he and his wife like to go for breakfast quite often – and it sounded like just the spot I was looking for.
It was easy to find, and as good as promised. I had the Number 1 breakfast – 2 eggs (scrambled), crisp bacon, excellent homefries, and an english muffin toasted on the grill, along with a decent cup of coffee – all for $7.49!! It’s a not-fancy place, with big windows, wood paneling, formica tables, and waitresses calling everyone “honey” plus all the locals you could ask for. I was really glad I asked for something local, and that the desk clerk had good taste in breakfast places. Almost drove back to thank him, but it was already after 10 and I wanted to keep on heading down the road to our friends’ place in High Point, NC.
We had a really wonderful visit with Katy and Scott. They and their two dogs, Hershey and Looley are great hosts. Within minutes, all three dogs were running around – although it took Hershey a little while to accept Max and not feel that he had to protect Looley from him! Once all that was sorted out, the dogs got along fine.
On Friday, after the dogs had worn themselves out running in the ball field behind the house, Katy, Scott and I headed off for a tour of High Point by car, then over to Winston for lunch and museums.
Scott drove, and kept up a running commentary on the furniture markets that are held twice a year in High Point – showing me all the empty showrooms that are only used twice annually, and remarking on the fact that High Point has not much going on except for when the markets happen. As we drove, it suddenly dawned on me that it was Friday and all the downtown streets were as empty as if it was a Saturday or Sunday.
We drove over to Winston and went to one of their favorite lunch spots. Skippy’s is primarily a hot dog place – serving excellent dogs in soft pretzel buns with your choice of toppings, some of the best fries I’ve had in a long time (Duckfat in Portland, Maine comes to mind as my favorite place for fries), and birch beer soda. I felt like I had been transported back to my childhood! The place was mobbed; we had a 15-20 minute wait for our order, and were lucky to get a table at all! If you ever are passing through Winston-Salem, plan to go to Skippy’s for lunch!
Next we went to the Art Gallery in the Scales Fine Art Center at Wake Forest University and saw a marvelous show by an artist named Ed Rice, featuring paintings of architectural details, sheds, and barns that was simply exquisite.
We followed that with a visit to SECCA (Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art) where there was another fabulous show by Shinique Smith titled Every Brick.
As described by SECCA: Baltimore-born, Brooklyn-based artist Shinique Smith marries elements of graffiti, collage and fashion with performance, painting, music and sculpture to create cross-disciplinary works that bristle with lived energy.
In addition, there was an amazing video installation by Winston-Salem artist Glenda Wharton titled The Zo.
Again, as described by SECCA: With haunting narratives, fluid drawing skills, and dream-like coloration, Winston-Salem artist Glenda Wharton breathes new life into the increasingly rare practice of hand-drawn animation.
We rounded out our afternoon with a driving tour through the upscale mansions of High Point, then home to the dogs, a sauna, and delicious dinner prepared by Katy.
I left this morning feeling refreshed by our break from driving, and by spending time with my friends. It was especially nice to see them in their “winter digs,” since I only know them in a Stonington context! Thanks Katy and Scott for putting up with a rowdy puppy, and sharing your home and time with us!
Tonight, we are settled into another Red Roof Inn – this one in Mt. Pleasant, SC just across the Arthur Ravenel Jr. bridge from Charleston.