Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Breakfast at the Scenic Diner

We love places like the Scenic 90 Diner, in Pensacola, Florida, where local people go to meet and exchange news and gossip and to “chew the fat”. This diner was no exception. They had great breakfast foods – the $3.99 Scenic Special had two eggs, any way you like them, grits or fried potatoes, toast or biscuit, and you could add bacon or sausage for just a little more. They also had a fruit bowl and a granola/yoghurt special for the tennis Moms, but it looked to me like most of them were having the eggs special, too.

The outside looks like an old fashioned (but very modern and upscale) diner:

The interior was equally stylish:

And here were some friendly locals, willing to have their photos taken. They had never heard of “blogs” before:


You can see some of the black and white photos the owner has used to decorate the diner in the background. The food was excellent, individually prepared, the service was also good, and the entire experience reminded us of how good it is to have places in communities where people can gather or even just run into one another to catch up on local news. Prices were reasonable, although not as inexpensive as the chains – Denny’s, Waffle House, etc. We also really like it when the police are a part of the community, and not someone to be afraid of. The Scenic 90 Diner also serves lunch and dinner.

April 14, 2007 Posted by | Adventure, Blogging, Bureaucracy, Community, Cooking, Customer Service, Diet / Weight Loss, Eating Out, ExPat Life, Florida | 7 Comments

Seville’s Palace Cafe for Breakfast

We had a favorite place for breakfast, Adonna’s, but first they discontinued AdventureMan’s favorite – Biscuits and Gravy – and then they discontinued mine, which was Cinnamon Roll French Toast. What to do? Where to go? We go often to The Scenic Diner, but we wanted something different.

We checked out a few places but nothing felt right. Then we remembered the Palace Cafe at Seville, a place we had wanted to try for breakfast for quite a while.

They had a good crowd, but we were seated immediately and coffee and tea arrived within minutes. As we ordered, AdventureMan said “oh! We haven’t had beignets here; let’s have those!” and I applaud the waitress, who didn’t bat an eye, didn’t say a thing, not a single thing about all the times I have been there with GCCDC groups and ordered beignets for all the tables, because they are so good.

When they arrived, I told AdventureMan how often I had them before; I just couldn’t let him believe a lie. These beignets are like the ones we ate in New Orleans, a little like the lightest deep fried donut you ever ate. So much air, and powdered sugar – that can’t be all that bad for you, right? Right? Aren’t they beautiful?


I had the Palace eggs, which comes with grits or hash browns or fruit, and it was perfect:


AdventureMan had the breakfast croissant. He said it was a pretty good croissant – he still misses our breakfasts in France.

There were families there, children playing while the adults visited. There were adult groups, there were buddies. It was active without being noisy.

It was also one of the best breakfasts we have had in a long time. We love this place.

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October 24, 2013 Posted by | Building, Character, Eating Out, Food, Living Conditions, Restaurant | , , , | Leave a comment

Fairhope and Panini Pete’s

‘What are we up to today?” one of the Doha reunion visitors asked as we sat around the breakfast table at the Shiny Diner.

“I was thinking a drive into Alabama,” I threw out, “Or is there anything you have heard of you would like to visit, or re-visit?”

“I’ve never been in Alabama before!” one guest enthused. “I could cross it off my list!”

We dropped one friend off at the airport, said our farewells, and headed into Alabama. For those of you who are thinking it might be a long trip, Pensacola is close to the border; 20 minutes later we were in Alabama.

“Where are we going?” the remaining two visitors asked.

“I’m thinking Fairhope,” I responded, “it’s cute, and there are walks, and shopping, and cute restaurants.”

While we are not world-class shoppers, Fairhope is enticing, with it’s small boutiques and specialty shops. It’s not like the same-old same-old in every mall and strip-mall.

As we walked along the Fairhope Pier, we guessed how long it was. We saw several people doing laps of the pier – what a great place to walk, all that fresh air, the view of the Mobile skyline, the wind and the water. One of the walkers strolled along with us and told us the pier was exactly 1/4 mile, so if you walk out and back, you have walked 1/2 mile. She also gave us a recommendation for a place to eat, in Fairhope’s French Quarter, Panini Pete’s. “Be sure to eat outside,” she counseled us.

We found Panini Pete’s, and snagged a place in the gazebo, which I thought was ‘outside’.

It was a lovely location. My friends had the Reuben sandwiches with special homemade chips:

I had the house salad with grilled chicken:

We spent a lovely time dining, only to discover that we were not outside; this is what ‘outside’ is:

I did not take a photo of dessert – we shared an order of beignet. These were the big round fluffy beignets, covered with powdered sugar. So yummy!

It was a great visit, even though we never found an Alabama Starbucks cup for our visiting friend, she did get to spend time in Alabama. Next reunion, maybe we will check off Louisiana and Mississippi, the only other states she has not visited.

January 26, 2012 Posted by | Adventure, ExPat Life, Friends & Friendship, Road Trips, Shopping, Travel | 2 Comments

Like Magic

I woke up this morning, astounded at how easy the transition has been in this direction. Yes, there are some moments in late afternoon when I can’t keep my eyes open, but . . . well, that can happen even when I am NOT jet lagging, LOL! AdventureMan and I are both doing well. We got up at our normal time this morning, well rested. Thanks be to God!

Yesterday I finished a quilt I have been working on for a Pensacola Quilt Guild challenge; it actually went to Kuwait with me, but I did not put in a single stitch while I was gone. I had great light, too, just not the time or interest in working on it. It’s finished now, hanging, so I can inspect for stray threads, etc. that I might have missed . . .

We emptied our day of activities yesterday, no water aerobics, no bible study, we just took it easy on ourselves, gave ourselves a day to transition to Pensacola mode. I did three loads of laundry, we both unpacked, and AdventureMan is now immersed in tax documents. Maybe this year we will actually submit our taxes on time, although the mere thought is enough to make me laugh, it is so unthinkable. We are lucky if we get them in by June in a normal year, but ‘normal’ is different now, living back in the United States, and we are trying to get on track with being residents again.

No photos; we are doing things we have done before and told you about. Breakfast at the Shiny Diner. AdventureMan was dying for lunch at Sonny’s Bar-B-Q; AdventureMan laughed, I hadn’t eaten there since he left, but it’s always good, always reliable, and I especially love their smoked turkeys. Dinner was the delicious chili EnviroGirl left in our refrigerator, how can anything that delicious be good for you?

On. On. Today I think I will finally buy my iPhone. 🙂

February 17, 2011 Posted by | Adventure, Cultural, Eating Out, ExPat Life, Family Issues, Florida, Food, Living Conditions, Pensacola, Relationships, Travel | 2 Comments