Like most people, I have my preferred bars and restaurants, and like many people, I seek them out based on keeping the money in the family. However, just being family is not sufficient. What's important is being welcome. Oh yeah, and the food has to be good.
On one of my first trips to The Burough, I was planning to meet a peep who is transgender for dinner, and I wanted to be sure I wouldn't have to fight our way out later that evening. The bartender, who, I later learned, was a part owner, assured me it would not be a problem, and her tone left me feeling that if I did have to fight my way out, she would be on my side.
We had dinner uneventfully, and a good dinner it was. That was the first of many delightful evenings to follow, though I don't believe the TG peep has returned to town since then, but that's another story for another day.
While there during the summer a few months back, I was checking out, and I noticed that my name was on the check. Not a table number. Not a chair. Not a location. My name. It was then that I realized I didn't always have to order. I just had to sit down. My predictability can be alarming, I suppose, and I'll work on that later.
Hay! I like me some tomato bisque and mac-n-cheese. And rum and Diet. Nonetheless, it was there that day when I noticed my name on the check, that I realized just how welcoming this place is, and that not only why I go back, but it's also why I'm writing today's note.