When Nolan walked into the room they were staying in, he saw the rollaway bed that had just been dropped off for his sister to sleep in. His parents would get the bed and he was on the couch. So Nolan set his back of clothes next to the couch and heard his mother get upset. There were roaches crawling up the wall and she wasn’t happy with the decision to several days at this motel. Charlie tried to explain that roaches were just part of life in Mississippi. Nolan’s dad Charlie had grown up with roaches on the walls in rural Mississippi and Louisiana. He didn’t love it but he certainly wasn’t going to drive ten hours back home because of a few bugs, or maybe thousands. Nolan’s mom decided she was going to stay outside for as much of the trip as possible and she was very uncomfortable living amongst the roaches.
In the meantime Nolan’s sister had collected some shells from the beach and decided to put them in the bathtub with her. A few minutes into her bath and just after the roach conversation, she screamed. Nolan’s mom went flying in there and then started to laugh. Two of the shells she had collected had hermit crabs in them and had started walking around her feet. The whole family was pretty much done with this hotel but with four more days to go they had to find something to do out with the family.
They all got dressed and went to meet with some of their favorite great aunts and uncles to talk about what to do for dinner. The obvious decision was to eat some seafood while they were on the coast, so they went down to a boat dock with a restaurant raised high in the air above it. Nolan had never eaten in a building up on poles like that and was a little concerned that a strong wind could blow the whole thing over and leave them eating dinner in the Gulf. But nobody else was concerned so he just went up the stairs with the family.
It was the best food Nolan had ever eaten. Scallops were clearly from heaven and the shrimp was way better than what he was used to. The only seafood places back home were Long John Silver and Red Lobster and he loved them both. Growing up under the light of the Red Lobster sign, it was a natural spot for special occasions like birthdays. But this coastal shrimp was just a different kind of good. You could smell and hear the ocean, if you weren’t careful you could fall into the ocean from this place.
The stuffed crab was also incredible and Nolan was having a great time just eating. His family didn’t eat out much but it was a nice treat when they did. His normal diet was sandwiches and frozen pizza that he made himself. It was really something to get to eat whatever he chose from the menu. Nolan’s great uncle offered to pick up the tab. He was a retired FBI agent and ran a pretty lucrative handful of businesses as well. He did private investigating where he would hire other retired agents to investigate and give them a cut. He had a couple of cattle ranches too. He did some kind of planning and advising work, helping people write wills and trusts and things. But the biggest money was in buying up mineral rights before the oil companies started drilling in an area, he owned a lot of oil and gas rights.