The plan was to eat dinner at Applebee's. And knowing it was February 14th we decided to have an early dinner to avoid the normal dinner time rush. So we piled into Glenn and Carole's car and took off at 4:00 to find the closest Applebee's, which Samantha on the Garmin told us was about 6 miles away. We drove through the weekend San Antonio traffic, which in a word is crazy, passing by many chain restaurants all with packed parking lots, and arrived at the address that was programmed into the Garmin. To our surprise we found an empty parking lot and a huge FOR LEASE sign posted on the former restaurant. Oh dear. So much for that dinner. Glenn took Samantha down from her perch on the dash and started pushing her buttons. Hey, what's this? Another Applebee's only 3 miles from this spot! Okay, off we went, back into the traffic and honking horns. In no time at all, Samantha was telling us we were arriving at our programmed spot on the left. Uh? That bar and grill? What's this? It's occupying the Applebee's building but is definitely not what we were looking for. Unbelievably, the two restaurants we had chosen were closed!
By this time we were getting hungry because we had skipped lunch in preparation for our "early" dinner. We almost thought we should return home and fix a sandwich, but we were geared up for a nice dinner out. Back to pushing Samantha's buttons and we found an Outback Steakhouse, about 3 miles in the other direction. Should we chance it? Yes! We were hungry! Off we went and within 10 minutes we had located the restaurant, the full parking lot, the cars parked along the edge of the road in front of the place, and the cars spilling over into the shopping center lot next to it. We politely threaded our way through the line which extended out the door and down the full length of the building. In answer to our "how long?" we were informed "oh, only about an hour and ten minutes." Only. So we got in line, soon finding a spot to sit on a bench along the inside wall. We struck up a conversation with other waiting patrons, and found several had already waited an hour and a half! Oh well, we were here now. And we were getting hungrier.
An hour and twenty minutes passed before we were ushered to our booth. The steak that soon arrived at our table was very good! Or maybe we were just hungry! The dinner was over way too soon with the good friends and the good food, and when Carole and I waited in the entry as the men settled the bill, we again struck up a conversation with waiting folks. The woman we spoke with said they had been told the wait was two hours! And then we opened the door and hurried off to the car in the temperature that was at least 20 degrees colder than when we had arrived. A front had come in and the temperature plummeted. BRRRRRRR.......but at least we now had full stomachs!