Tuesday, August 05, 2008
The big joke between my wife and I since we got back from vacation is that when people ask we say, "we went to the shore but didn't go in the ocean."
And it's true.
The water was freakin' cold.
Frigid you might say.
Somewhere in the high 50s/low 60s.
But that didn't stop this dude from tuning blue in the name of fun.
I think I went in twice in 10 days and only know am I starting to feel my balls and the tips of my toes again.
I think a road trip to Wrightsville might be on deck for Saturday.
The current water temp there is 79...
Getting donuts on Sunday after mass is a Barbera family tradition that goes back as far as I can remember.
So when I was at the beach and I didn't see my brother around after mass on Sunday morning, my nephew Michael told me he went to get donuts.
"Creme donuts," he said.
"Ever had 'em?"
"Yeah I've had creme donuts before," I told him.
"But these have special creme," he said.
"Oh, you mean the kind that makes your teeth itch?" I said.
"What does that mean?" he asked.
"It's a Pop Pop term," I said and explained how my dad uses that term for things that are sweet.
My brother and sister-in-law returned, put the donut box on the table and then I opened it up.
Would you look at those things!
My nephew referred to them as "donut burgers" because life for him is full of Simpsonalia.
These of course, should not be confused with these donut burgers which couldn't possibly be more disgusting.
Although I bet Homer would eat one.
Once you get over the Delaware Memorial Bridge, you hang a right on 40 and head east to the beach towns.
There's not much to see during this stretch except endless rows of corn or maybe the Jersey Devil which is known to inhabit the Pine Barrens of south Jersey.
And then there's Cowtown.
When I think of Jersey, rodeos don't immediately come to mind.
Nope, more like The Boss or Yo La Tengo maybe some Silver Queen corn or Maxwells in Hoboken.
I definitely don't think of cowboys and rodeos.
Cowtown has always intrigued me.
We should have stopped.
I always want to stop but am always too eager to get to the shore.
You'll know you are in Cowtown when you see the cowboy.
Of course it came up on us sooner than I expected and what with the digital camera taking forever to boot up and my wife's lead foot, I managed to only capture a sliver.
But I like the sliver.
Because that's just one of my patented typos away from silver.
And silver always makes me think of this junkie cowboy chestnut...
Shortly after experiencing the joy that was the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel, my kids lost their bridge virginity on this bad boy.
It's the world's longest twin suspension bridge and going over it, according to my 5-year-old, was like a ride at the NC Sate Fair.
Most of our family trips involved a direct line to three places: North Topsail Beach, cabins in Ashe county or going home.
Going west or east in the state of North Carolina, there's not much to see. Sure on the way to the mountains to get to pass by Winston-Salem which at least gives the kids something to look at besides trees and going east you get, well, you get to see not much of anything.
So when we saddled up to do vacation this year, the kids were jazzed at the prospect of staring off out their windows at something else.
They screamed when we entered the Harbor Tunnel in Baltimore. They've heard the stories for years about Baltimore from my wife and I. Both of us went to school at Towson University which is located north of Baltimore.
I used to ride my mountain bike down Charles Street into the city and people watch at the Inner Harbor or maybe take a trip to the seedy side of town.
When were were courting, you could often find my wife and I seeing hair metal bands at Hammerjacks . I think we saw Slayer there. I remember I almost got thrown over the balcony's railing because apparently where I was standing had good sight lines and some metal head wanted that spot.
And of course they had heard many (censored versions) of rugby tales over the years that involve the Charm City.
So when we saw the city's skyline on the horizon with the harbor to the right of us, we debriefed the boys that the tunnel was a-coming.
If you find yourself with some time on your hands in Baltimore, don't forget to get yourself some pie from Rodney.