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the dairy queen event

There's a Dairy Queen on 56th street that I've passed by at least a million times but never went to. Today for a change of pace I finally went in there just to check it out. The food is decent and this particular one is, I kid you not, a cool place to take a girl on a date. Not as cool as Johnny Rockets (the one in Citrus Park mall is awesome), but still cool. It's got this old-school vibe to it and the food is just as good as Ruby Tuesday's.

Going to the DQ means I've officially checked off another one of those "never experienced this from where I come from but now I have" on the list.

Never experienced a DQ before today? Nope.

Here's why:

I've made mention of my stomping grounds in Killingly CT more than a few times and this bloggo is going to be another one of those.

It is really difficult for me to describe how unbelievably isolated where I grew up actually was and still is. But this will give you some indication.

Here's a few businesses that are literally all within a five mile radius of me right now:

..and tons more.

Every single one of the above from where I come from takes a good hike to even get there.

IHOP is 22 miles away in Providence. Dairy Queen is 29 miles away in Willimantic. Krispy Kreme is 23 miles away in Cranston, or if you stay in-state, 30 miles away in Uncasville.

You get the idea.

This is just a teensy weensy example of the isolation that you deal with up in those parts.

I remember as a kid seeing television commercial for DQ and thinking, "Wow. The food looks good there. Too bad I'll never go..."

It wasn't that my family wouldn't take me there, because if I wanted to go, heck, we would have went. In my mind, my thoughts were along the line of, "That's a place people go when vacationing somewhere, like a big city or something."

Yeah. Seriously. Except DQ isn't a big city thing. They're in places where there are, y'know.. PEOPLE.

The best example is the Circle-K.

A fun movie I remember as a kid was Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. One line in that movie is:

Strange things are afoot at the Circle-K...

This is one of the best known lines in that flick.

When I saw this as a kid, I had no idea what a Circle-K was. I had absolutely no clue that it was in reference to a national convenience store chain.

I'm not joking.

Who doesn't know what a Circle-K is?

I didn't. In fact I'd never seen one, let alone been to one.

So you can imagine that when I first moved to Tampa I was nothing short of amazed of all the stuff that I thought only existed in Fantasy Land. Hey, look! 7-Eleven! Circle-K! DQ! Chili's! WOW!

I even used to think Worcester Massachusetts was the "big city". It isn't. The entire city is just a tick under 39 square miles - TOTAL.

Even after living in Tampa for over 3 years, I still get amazed at all the stuff that's accessible to me.

Anybody who isn't where I come from would have a reaction of something like, "Dude.. Circle-K? Dairy Queen? who cares?"

Yeah, I could understand that reaction. But my response to it would be, "Just imagine if there weren't any near you, and the closest one was 20 miles away."

The response to that would probably be, "Oh. Well.. that's different I guess."

Yeah. Real different. 🙂


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