I’ve mentioned before that one of the nicest things about the A-Z Blogging Challenge was meeting a bunch of interesting people online through stories and comments. That I would actually meet one of these blogging travelers in person a month later came as an unexpected bonus!
The second half of April, I discovered Jaye and Dan’s blog “Life Afloat”, where she writes about her minimalistic life on their 33’ sailboat Cinderella. I learned that, over the summer, she and her husband would crew on the tall ship El Galeon a second time. This life-size replica of a Spanish galleon would pull into Newburyport over Memorial Day weekend. And the rest was history as they say…
Mark, our temporary pet Jenny, and I jumped into the car on Friday morning for the 2.5 hour drive to Newburyport, pulling out of work early. Kind of. As Mark experienced many times over the last years, emailing and calling customers outside “the office” is quite inconvenient, but we’re here to please… We had lunch with his parents, dropped Jenny off with his sister-in-law on Plum Island and joined Jaye and Dan for an intriguing tour of El Galeon. To escape the overwhelming crowds visiting the ship, we retreated to a bar for a welcome drink and exchange of life stories. It was an entertaining afternoon, despite the nippy 60°F (15°C) temperature, which was 20 degrees less than predicted!
A visit on the water was combined with a visit on shore with family. Most of Saturday was spent with relatives on Plum Island. I thoroughly enjoyed babysitting Mark’s nieces, the almost 3-year old twins Cera and Lily, while their parents ran errands. They loved our walk on the beach and wiggling their toes in the frigid waves. Getting off our boat and temporarily living in New England has the big advantage of seeing the young ones grow up, and being a part of their lives.
Sunday had us back in Heath to host friends at our comfortable home in the woods. Long-time buddies Ryan and Denise came over for Memorial Day with their son Jake. A tour of the maple farm we live in (I will elaborate in the future) intrigued our company and the big property kept us entertained all afternoon. Dinner was a home-cooked Mexican feast of shrimp and chicken fajitas – Mark and I love our food!
On Monday, we lucked out with the weather. The predicted rain remained absent. After an extensive pancake breakfast with fresh fruit and luxuriously applied artisanal maple syrup, the five of us took Jenny for a decent walk around Pelham Lake. Staying on level ground prevented clumsy falls and hyperextended joints. Ignore that scream when I slipped on one of the mossy boards over swampy terrain… Will I ever be able to visit this park again without worrying about falling?
The highlight of Memorial Day was a meat fest prepared on the grill. A big-sized grill! The envy of all our cruising friends, I bet. Real BBQ-sets, just like normal-sized fridges and ovens are another beauty of living on land. Add it to our overall enjoyment of this lifestyle! Aaaah, the luxury of luxury… We stuffed our bellies, threw some of our healthy food rules overboard and had enough leftovers for the rest of the week. Mission Memorial Day weekend was accomplished and the unofficial start of summer couldn’t have arrived at a better time. We are both ready for sun, 70-80 degree (20s Celsius) temperatures, green grass and… allergies!
What did you do on Memorial Day Weekend, or your normal, outside of the US weekend?