Want lunch with a view, no waiting for a table, no tip required, and the opportunity to burp as needed? Whidbey has very nice restaurants, but sometimes they’re packed (for good reason), or at taking the day off (for good reason), or you have to wait (because you’re not the only one who wants to eat there), or, or… Or, remember that we live on an island. Drop by some local deli or any place that has take-out, grab your meal and go (after paying, of course), and head over to one of the island’s waterfront parks for an in-car picnic. Save money, save time, save a bit of your sanity, and enjoy a view that could include sailboats, whales, birds, volcanoes, and national parks.
Winter means dining indoors, or dining in your car. That can be messy, so don’t be. There’s probably room somewhere in there for a tray and napkins. Most cars have more than enough cupholders. You can have a choice of beverages.
Being in the car means you might miss the sounds of nature, but you can trade that off by opening the windows a bit. The heat might leak out, but that may be a fine thing. Besides, if your food steams up the windows you’ll miss the view.
Another good reason to dine in your car, keep the crows and sea gulls out of your food. Many a french fry has learned to fly from outdoor picnics.
Pick the right park and have restrooms nearby.
Look to the west for the Olympics for a view of white mountains, or a view of the approaching weather.
Look to the east for the Cascades, volcanoes, and a hint of the ski conditions. Is the crest clouded over? That may not be as pretty, but there may be powder involved.
Look around the parking lot and see the regulars, islanders who have their favorite parking spot and have equipped their car with tableware, and maybe a pillow and blankie for an after-meal nap.
Watch the people in the park that are getting some exercise or letting their dog(s) get some exercise. Add kids and the cuteness quotient climbs.
And maybe there will be boats and ships and whales and kite-surfers and so many things that move while you relax and enjoy comfort food.
Snap some shots, or not. You may want to show off your find, but if the boss finds out you might not want to share too much. Or simply enjoy the scenery without trying to conjure up witty words for social media. There’s only one Like to consider, and that’s yours. No receipt, but you do get more memories.