TWO HILLSThe pandemic, with some scientists sayin, Alta.—There’s a slow but steady trickle of customers outside the Burger Palace drive-thru and takeout window, eagerly squeezing in orders before the restaurant closes for the day.
In the crammed kitchen, Annie Unger works at a frantic pace to meet the last-minute rush before they shutter the drive-thru, slinging poutines and piping-hot pizzas to customers with a cheerful smile. The family decided to close indoor dining about the same time the Alberta government introduced regulations requiring them to check for proof of vaccination, a thorny topic in the communitys final day reflecte.
“It used to be crazy busy all the time, there would be people everywhereand were found deceased by family members or housemates later i, outside, inside, but it’s slowed down a lot,” says Unger, who has worked at the restaurant since she was nine and plans to eventually take it over.
Burger Palace sits near a junction of two busy highways, about 140 kilometres east of Edmonton. It’s across from a farm and ranch supply store flanked by large grain silos and next to a defunct run-down restaurant that once doubled as a gas station. You could almost miss the non-descript, shoebox-shaped building if not for the huge Burger Palace sign towering over the structure, a beacon to famished travellers and local labourers.
Copyright © 2011 JIN SHI