Good times, not so good times…

Well,
We’ve been looking forward to our adventure for a month. A drive through the countryside, to a nice restaurant, then summer stock theatre. A lovely summer evenings entertainment. Well, we’re batting .500 on this one…
We went to Mt. Carroll Il, for dinner. A cute restaurant called Bella’s. The owner/chef has worked in two of our cities tastier restaurants. Then decided open up a place of his own in a cute little town. to We’ve been there a couple times on a Sunday, and had a sandwich, and it was good. However, last nights ‘adventure’ was not quite the same experience…
We had 6pm reservations, but arrived at 5:40. Seated quickly, and had a drink, while perusing the menu. As we narrowed down our choice, we were told that three of the entrees were already unavailable, due to the fact that it was Wednesday evening, and the suppliers did not deliver fresh product until Thursday… Huh? They were out of some food? The menu is printed up weekly, so we have a problem…
Ok, we made our second choice, and the slightly muddled, but somewhat pleasant waitress took our order. Now- I should back up. When I made the reservations, and, when we arrived, I mentioned that we were attending the theatre, so as to inform them of our time constraints. Timberlake is a fairly big summer draw in the area, so they are well aware of patrons schedule for show nights.
So, order in, we chatted & waited for our salads. Got ’em, but in a leisurely fashion. Tick. Tick. Tick. Time rolling on. After 45 minutes, we asked approximately when we would see our food, as we had to leave for the theatre shortly. ” we’ve had a bit of a rush. Everyone arrived at once, so we’re a little behind”. Rush? There were maybe twenty people in the place… Fifteen more minutes. “um, we are running out of time. What’s the word?” ” any minute now. I am sorry”. At 6:50, our food arrived. Oh- it was not Peking duck, or something incredibly complicated. A grilled pork chop with rice, and chicken alfredo with linguini.
By this time, the waitress had pretty much given up hope of making us happy. As the plates hit the table, we were asking for carry out containers, since we didn’t have time to eat, and make it to our seats on time. She was apologetic, and took our name and number. ” The owner will want to make this right”. We’ll see…
We did make it to the theatre on time, but the people who parked next to us were also at Bellas. And, they had the same underwhelming experience. That is not good for the reputation. Maybe it was the ‘perfect storm’ of everything going horribly wrong that night, but, I do not think so…
Suffice it to say, that will not be going back any time soon…

On the bright side, however, Timberlake Playhouse saved the evening, and, was stellar! We saw Guys and Dolls, one of my very favorite plays, and they nailed it! I am not speaking as goofy uncle Tim, who, as the child manages to play three notes in a row, jumps up and applauds wildly. No, these actors were good! We have seen several plays on broadway, and, seriously, this held up to that level… The entire cast was good, but Tim Wessel, who played Nicely Nicely, and Hayley Gribble, who played Miss Adelaide, absafrickinlutely nailed their performances. A 110% well done bit of acting… Speaking in an AARP uncle voice, “these kids are gonna go places”.
If you know me, you know I can be a bit hard to please, but I was amazed by the whole cast, and the passion they put on the stage.
http://www.timberlakeplayhouse.org
If you like good summerstock theatre, want a fun evening, and, would like to support the future, check ’em out.

That’s the end of my long rant…. Thank you for listening…

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