It’s 0800 on 3 July. We’re on Breakfast Patrol. Marek’s got our flank.
Ivo brought his appetite.
Marek took this picture. The focus is the fault of the phone camera, but the composition isn’t bad. He’s capturing the palm trees and the blue skies conjure up carefree good times, while the underexposed seat backs of the car imply the constrained world view of a child. The moon roof and car theme convey motion, transition, while the trees and sky feel like an unchanging endless summer. He’s a real artiste, this boy.
I’m just the wheel-man. I turned right, then left, and ended up downtown Safety Harbor. We’ve been here for three other breakfasts, and today will round out the last breakfast we know of in the town.
Marek found us a cozy spot outside and got set up. He’s all about the knife these days. Should I be worried?
Turns out there’s actually another menu. When we took this picture we thought this was it. But they have all sorts of breakfast stuff on the other menu. But look at the advertisements on this place mat. Pain, dentistry, insurance, gout, kidney pain, plumbing. If you add them all up, it’s a little freaky. Did you notice the car changed between these two pictures?
“Hmmmmmm. I think I might have bacon and eggs today.”
“Hmmmmmm. I think I might eat my brother’s bacon and eggs, and then my father’s pancakes.”
That’s what YOU think, kid! Eat baby goop! Ha-HA!
Did that look so delicious that you wanted to try it? Maybe with some lovely black coffee, poured hot and fresh? Me too.
Our very nice waitress tallied our order and suggested we just do “the special” with added blueberries. An extra plate was free. So we did that. And here’s what it looks like.
I swear, there was a deadly silence. Tick, went the clock on the wall.
Marek stared at Ivo.
Ivo stared at Marek.
And my breakfast got caught in the crossfire.
We settled this just the way they do at breakfast at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. Seriously, they all divide up their breakfasts this way.
No, I did not allow Ivo to pick up that syrup bottle and glug it like formula. Though he was saddened that he couldn’t.
If you, my fellow fathers, were ever wondering how to win “Father of the Year,” here’s how. Try to take a bite of your own breakfast, which takes 0.034 seconds. In half that time, your less than one year old will stand up in his high chair and try to get the syrup bottle. Pop quiz! Do you:
A. Hand him the syrup in the hope that he sits down quietly
B. Hand him the syrup because he’ll just overpower you for it if you don’t
C. Hand him the syrup because that’s what you have in his regular bottle anyway
D. Get the attention of the lady at the next table over and tell her to control her kid
The bill was around ten bucks for all that. Let’s talk about “all that” for a moment.
The eggs were just right, as if somehow you could tell that the chickens were … happy. I can’t comment on the bacon as it immediately took a ride on the alimentary express, next stop: Marek. The pancakes were top-notch, really fine work. As good as Kissin’ Cuzzins, and just a shade, an 8th of a notch below Skyway Jack’s. The price was right where it needed to be. The coffee was as good as I like. And several of the waitresses had significant tattoo coverage, which is a bonus point to an inky guy like me. This was a good breakfast.
Marek was satisfied enough to pay the bill.
And, because he’s four and not fourteen, he brought back change!
Remember our last breakfast, with the jelly and Marek licking the jelly off the toast? Well, we had to take this jelly home with us. “Just in case, dad.”
The Safety Harbor Grill was simply a great experience. The people were friendly. The chow was great. The price was just right. No animals or children were injured. It’s surely worth a trip across the bay (unless you live in Safety Harbor, then you can just walk or pedal there, I assume).
We’re pleased to give the Safety Harbor Grill a Tampa Bay Breakfasts four and a half pancake rating.
If you were driving by the Causeway beach and saw this wicked bike and car duo, you’d stop, too, wouldn’t you?
So we stopped at the little beach on the east side of the causeway. This is a dad-style “let’s go to the beach, we don’t need any bathing suits” beach day. Just get your tiny hiney out there, boy!
Marek went to check out the water (which is, for the fretful reader, about ankle-deep for a good 30 meters out. No danger of sharks.) Me and Ivo, we hung back, cool in the shade. Because dad didn’t bring any baby sunblock, natch.
This gaggle of girls were burying this boy in the sand. I don’t think he realized his sand-body had enormous bosoms and an obviously pregnant belly.
We ended up following Marek down to the water. These are Marek’s footprints. I’m still a new enough parent to get all wistful about silly things like this.
And then Ivo and I started making footprints, too.
With these toes, these ones right here.
Just a normal day.