Had a lunch meeting with some new friends this week at a well-known restaurant in North Jersey. One of our guests had an allergy to mustard.

It's the first I've heard of a mustard allergy, so of course, I asked a lot of questions and may have mentioned that her allergy would likely be a show topic on Tuesday. Unfortunately, it was more than a conversation.

After asking about the ingredients of the salad dressing, we were confident that the food was allergy safe. First of all, the food was very good, any meeting that starts with raw oysters is likely to be a good one. When our lunch arrived, she took a bite of her salad and you could tell something was wrong.

My new friend asked me to taste the salad and see if there was mustard in the dressing. Not being a germaphobe (credit hot yoga) so I dug in. Although I have a relatively decent palette, I wasn't sure when I tasted the dressing. So of course, I went in for another bite. It was delicious.

Elevate via Unsplash
Elevate via Unsplash

Back to the story, we called the waiter over and asked him to confirm with the chef. Meanwhile, my friend jumped up and bolted to her car where she has no fewer than three EpiPens.

House Oversight Committee Holds Hearing On Rising Price Of EpiPens With Mylan Inc. CEO Heather Bresch
Getty Images

Two things crossed my mind. First, would she make it to the car or would I need to deliver the shot? And two, how awful a mustard allergy would be! Mustard is a key ingredient in my potato, chicken, and egg salad. I've used mustard for slow-cooked beef and ribs. It's our go-to when our friend Amy serves crabs, a simple mustard and mayo dipping sauce. Plus we love Kielbasa sliced and fried with mustard.

Anyway, my friend was fine and the restaurant apologized and comped our lunch. Of course, our other friend pulls out cash and we decided it was the right thing to tip the waiter on what the price of the meal would have been. As you know, I don't carry cash so I deferred to my lunch partners. The cash thing is a whole other discussion. Later this week.

Have you ever needed medical attention at a restaurant? Ever saved anyone? Hit me up on the free New Jersey 101.5 app and let me know YOUR story!

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.

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NJ county fairs make a comeback: Check out the schedule for 2022

UPDATED 4/10: A current list of county fairs happening across the Garden State for 2022. From rides, food, animals, and hot air balloons, each county fair has something unique to offer.

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These are the best hiking spots in New Jersey

A trip to New Jersey doesn't have to be all about the beach. Our state has some incredible trails, waterfalls, and lakes to enjoy.

From the Pine Barrens to the Appalachian Trail to the hidden gems of New Jersey, you have plenty of options for a great hike. Hiking is such a great way to spend time outdoors and enjoy nature, plus it's a great workout.

Before you go out on the trails and explore some of our listeners' suggestions, I have some tips on hiking etiquette from the American Hiking Society.

If you are going downhill and run into an uphill hiker, step to the side and give the uphill hiker space. A hiker going uphill has the right of way unless they stop to catch their breath.

Always stay on the trail, you may see side paths, unless they are marked as an official trail, steer clear of them. By going off-trail you may cause damage to the ecosystems around the trail, the plants, and wildlife that live there.

You also do not want to disturb the wildlife you encounter, just keep your distance from the wildlife and continue hiking.

Bicyclists should yield to hikers and horses. Hikers should also yield to horses, but I’m not sure how many horses you will encounter on the trails in New Jersey.
If you are thinking of bringing your dog on your hike, they should be leashed, and make sure to clean up all pet waste.

Lastly, be mindful of the weather, if the trail is too muddy, it's probably best to save your hike for another day.

I asked our listeners for their suggestions of the best hiking spots in New Jersey, check out their suggestions:

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