Thursday, March 8, 2007
It was the first time I’d ever eaten a barbecue sandwich at 8:40 in the morning.
Ronnie Day and I, on our 24-hour, around-the-county adventure of shooting photographs for this week’s Profile Edition, stopped at Betty Davis Grocery on Highway 7 South near the Lafayette County line.
There we met Mary Young, who has been serving customers 16 years at the popular establishment.
She was already chopping barbecue for what I assumed was the lunch crowd.
But instead she surprised us and offered us one for what we considered breakfast.
She added sauce and slaw and we left for our next stop with tasty barbecues in hand.
I was not accustomed to eating a barbecue for breakfast but it was very good. I would prefer a sausage and biscuit that time of day, or at least my stomach would.
Mary is just one of many good folks we met along our journey that cold day in early February.
We had planned to get some sleep prior to our midnight start. I think I dozed off for about an hour while watching television at 8 p.m. that Thursday night.
Then I was up and ready to go.
We met at the office about 12:15 a.m., Friday, Feb. 9.
Our first stop was at 12:45 a.m. at the 911 dispatch office. Our last stops were at Potts Camp and Holly High basketball games that night, plus Ronnie made it by a church Valentine’s get-together in his home community of Bethlehem.
We did cheat a bit. We didn’t make it to 11:59 p.m. that Friday.
I will admit, Ronnie held up the best, even though I was the only one who got to take a brief nap during the day while he drove.
One thing’s certain – Marshall County never totally sleeps.
From convenience store workers to police officers, people were busy in the early morning hours.
I’m not sure how we passed up breakfast at the Highway 72 Shell Food Mart in Mt. Pleasant at 1:45 a.m., but we did. It sure looked good as Veranda Rounds was cooking it, but we just weren’t used to eating at that time – we were normally asleep.
It seemed all along the way, Ronnie saw people he knew, such as security guard Lorraine Benson at Exel on Wingo Road at 2:14 a.m.
We enjoyed all our stops and conversations, but one of our favorites had to be Thompson Brothers Dairy on Hernando Road. We had called ahead of time on this one – finding out the milking time. The Thompson brothers welcomed us and said we’d find them about 3 a.m., and we did.
We did a little driving around in the dark, until we saw a pickup turn up a side road and the lights of the building.
Jimmy and Tommy Thompson had started their daily routine, and they let us hang around and watch and snap photos for about 30 minutes or so.
The family business has been in operation since 1946. It’s impressive, and I’m still amazed at how anyone can get to work at 3 a.m. every day.
The regular breakfast group at Corner Quick Stop in Potts Camp was busy telling tales and sharing laughs at 6:39 a.m.
We met a kind lady, Addie Bolden, at 11:10 a.m. at Bolden’s Grocery at Hudsonville. She’s 86 but staying active and still enjoying her time at the family business.
We spent our biggest chunk of time at the new Meucci Cues on Highway 302. Plant manager Randy Wicker was kind enough to let us barge in during a busy production time and take us through the process of making pool cues.
We appreciate everyone’s cooperation on this rather long day.
Our goal was to get lots of faces in the newspaper, and thanks to you, we accomplished that.
We had lots of fun, and according to the response we receive from this year’s Profile Edition, we just might do it again in coming years.
And next time I might actually try to get more than an hour or two of sleep leading up to the big day.
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