Meteors, Meandering, and Bankrupt Mexican Restaurants

The Perseid meteor shower was excellent, even though the sky was very cloudy! Eric and I headed out to Robyn and Derrick’s house in Fredericksburg to see it. They live in the woods, so we had a perfectly dark viewing platform. At a little after midnight, we wandered out onto their back porch with our beers and saw one meteor pass right through a break in the clouds. I was so excited! The four of us put a blanket on the sidewalk and saw several more over the next couple of hours as the clouds began to clear.

The next day, we took a walk on the path that runs by the canal in the Fredericksburg area. There are a TON of turtles out there, clustered on the rocks to sun themselves. Some of the turtles are quite large – easily as big as a dinner plate. We didn’t stay on the path long because it was just too hot.

Small turtle getting some sun

On the way back home, I decided on the spur of the moment to take a look at the old Chi-Chi’s building near Spotsylvania Mall (oh excuse me, Spotsylvania Towne Centre). Chi-Chi’s was an extremely popular chain of Mexican restaurants for a long time. Unfortunately, a devastating outbreak of Hepatitis A was traced to green onions from one of its restaurants in 2003, sickening over 600 people and killing four. All of its U.S. restaurants closed, although I still saw some overseas in both Brussels and Luxembourg City last year. Many Chi-Chi’s were left abandoned all across the U.S., some becoming serious eyesores (at least in the eyes of those who don’t like abandoned buildings 😉 Thanks to The Governess for putting up one of my (crappy) photos of the old Fred Chi-Chi’s at her blog, Creepy Abandoned Chi-Chis. I say that it was crappy because it was an overcast day, and I used my cell phone to take the picture. Don’t worry; I’ll go back.

We have some problems with the balcony above ours that turned out to be pretty serious. I would like to thank my upstairs neighbor for slopping so much water on her plants that it dripped through a crack on her balcony onto my head and caused me to look up. I then realized that not only is there an opening between her balcony and the side wall, but the back corner of her balcony is a bit lower than the same area on the balcony next door. A support has been hammered in place for now, and we are staying off of it until Thursday when the building owner will come take a look.

I won sixth place in a sweepstakes and I just got the prize check of … dun dun dun … $10! Hey, no complaints here.

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3 responses to “Meteors, Meandering, and Bankrupt Mexican Restaurants

  1. Can’t wait to go back and check out that path again.

  2. Oh my god, I had no idea that’s why Chi-Chi’s closed! I thought they just went out of business. Wow. Well, I love old abandoned buildings — one man’s eyesore is my palace! Charlotte Snead used to waitress at the one in Fredericksburg, remember? We ate there once so we could see her.

    Congrats on the sweepstakes! What was it for?

    • Hey Cat – the sweepstakes was sponsored by a company that I do surveys for. With every survey you complete, you’re entered to win a sweepstakes. This was the first time I won one! 🙂 (The company is called Synovate) And yeah, I remember that Chi Chi’s very well. It was awesome. It became something called Aztlan shortly after it closed, but I don’t think it was open as that for long. There are tons of abandoned Chi Chi’s all over the U.S.

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