July 4th

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Today was Independence Day for us Americans, and I can still hear fireworks going off as I type this. Despite having a stale Cheeto as President, it’s still important to have pride in your country and remember its history.

I decided to spend part of the day at the Antietam National Battlefield in Sharpsburg, Maryland. I haven’t been there since I was a kid, despite it being so close, so I thought it would be cool to drop by and take some pictures.

Independence Day and the Battle of Antietam are two different things that happened in different months and different years, but I just somehow ended up there today. The Battle of Antietam was part of the Civil War and took place on September 17, 1862. It’s one of the bloodiest single days in America’s history. Over 22,000 soldiers, between the Union and the Confederacy, were killed or wounded.

It called for rain today, but luckily it held out until later on. The sky was dark in places, though, which actually made for some pretty pictures.

T.G.I. Friday’s

IMG_4131I’m not the biggest fan of chain restaurants, but I admit to visiting some of them from time to time. Tonight I was shopping for a new bike with my mother and Aunt. We got hungry, so we stopped into the nearby T.G.I. Friday’s restaurant. I used to absolutely love it there a decade ago, but the one in my town has really gone downhill since then.

One of my favorite items on the menu was always the Bruschetta Chicken Pasta. However, the last time I ate there I discovered that they changed the recipe. They switched the noodles from angel hair to fettuccine, used a different, thicker sauce, and also sprinkled less balsamic on it. I was not happy to say the least because the old way was definitely superior.

I wasn’t sure if I would get that pasta again this time around, but after scouring the very limited menu, I noticed they no longer serve a lot of their old items. Another disappoinment. In that case, I decided to go ahead and get the Bruschetta Chicken Pasta again, despite the recipe change. My mother opted for the same thing, while my Aunt got something else.

The service was terrible. Our waiter seemed more concerned with other tables than he was with ours, and we waited 45 minutes before we finally received our meals. My Aunt said that her food was okay, but the pasta that my mom and I got was lukewarm and cold in spots. It was also half the portion size that it once was but with the same hefty price tag. It did have a good taste though, but the temperature was definitely off and it was not worth the cost. My mother brought this to the attention of the manager, who offered us free dessert in return. She asked if we could just have a discount on our bill, but he insisted on the dessert. I’m not big on sweets, and none of us really wanted it, but we accepted it since it was free. If you go on Yelp, the Friday’s in my town only has a rating of 2/5 stars and I can definitely see why. It’s a shame that it isn’t what it used to be because I used to love going there.