In Waterloo, there is a place called Harmony Lunch. It’s a greasy spoon in the most classic sense of the word. It’s been open, and family-run, since 1930. I believe the interior is original. 🙂 The milkshake machine is mint green and semi-circular and holds three cups. The grill, upon which they grill their famous burgers and fried onions, is not in the kitchen, it’s out front, right behind the bar, where you can see it. Sometimes they have the exhaust running, venting out front onto the sidewalk. The recipe for their hand-formed hamburgers is very particular and apparently contains several meats. The wallpaper is patterned and deep yellow. I suspect it was once white. Your nose, trachea, and lungs are coated in grease the moment you walk in the door.
I ate there once. With my Dad. They were very special circumstances. Mark, one of the guys at work, loves the place (there are a few of these die hards). Rob and Andrew, the others on the team, had never been. And so, having another errand to run in Waterloo at lunch time, it was decided to lunch there. I tagged along. Not to eat. To be entertained. (And somehow I ended up paying. Seriously, Mark, like they’re going to take any kind of plastic in a place like that…)
I was, though – entertained. 🙂 Mark tucked into his two onion-laden cheeseburgers like an old pro. Andrew and Rob were a little more tentative. A lot more tentative by the time they got into the second burger. Heh. We discussed whether they might feel better after lunch if they had a cigarette. (Neither smokes, though Mark does.)
It may be psychosomatic, but I can FEEL the place. On my skin (especially my face), in my nostrils, in my lungs… Blech. Yes, a Waterloo institution and landmark it is… and God help me, I have a date tonight.