The 4 Way

Yesterday, I drove to Memphis to have lunch with a very old friend and his brother and then turn around and come home.

We met at The 4 Way, which is right behind Greenwood Cemetery. I got there first and they asked me if I was dining in. I said yes and that there would be two more people joining me unless they already had two white guys, in which case, I’d be joining them. Everyone laughed.

My friend and his brother walked to the restaurant, which I thought was a not-wise decision, but my friend walks all over his city, going by the rule that he’s fairly safe because he’s tall and minds his own business.

The food was fantastic and there was so much of it. And it was the kind of place where they got all our backstory even before the guys got there, so they were happy to let us sit at a table and talk and talk even though they were growing very crowded as church let out.

And then, when we went to leave, one of the staff, a woman, learned the guys had walked there and she scolded him and told him, “I’m going to need you to take a Lyft or a cab when you come here.” And he later remarked that getting scolded by a woman in Memphis is the start of a great blues song. Which, hell yes, it is.

I woke up at 5 this morning and just laid in bed being happy. Which I know is weird, but when you spend time with someone you love and have loved for a long time, and you tell stories and opine on Robert Plant and get teased by everyone who works at a restaurant you’ve never been to before, it’s just good.

And it filled my heart and it’s making me cry just a little bit to write about it. When do we get our Star Trekkian transporters so we can visit people who live far away instantly?

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