Tuesday, June 16, 2009

OBX with the fam - Part 5

Before I get into this post, I'm going to ask my regular readers to do a little something for me. Just a tiny little something.
1. Turn towards northern England
2. Smile and wave
Thanks! You just gave a warm welcome to the newest reader of this here blog: my father-in-law, Ken. Glad to have you here, Ken!

Now some more photos from the Outer Banks.

Yes, I've been dragging this out too long, but time has been slipping through my fingers. It's been a whole month since our week at the Outer Banks. Hard to believe! But you all will indulge me as I share just a few more photos, won't you?

Here's a pic from the top of Corolla's Currituck Beach lighthouse. I've heard people describe the Outer Banks of North Carolina as "The Ribbon of Sand". This is why. Off to the left you see the Atlantic Ocean. To the right, there's the Currituck Sound.

Mom and I bravely climbed the steps up the lighthouse, despite Mom's fear of see-through stairs. Luckily, we survived unscathed! Hooray!

Now back to the beach.

I have discovered that whenever Tim and I go to the beach, we have a little ritual that plays out along the water's edge. First of all, Tim steps out into the cold water while I stay back and take some pictures.

Then Tim assures me that the water isn't that cold. My toes tell me otherwise, so I stay on shore and use my camera as an excuse.

Tim ventures out deeper. Occasionally he turns around to give me a big smile that says, "This is fun! And a bit cold, but fun! You should join me. You'll love it. G'wan now. Put the camera aside and get out here!"

And I don't know why, but that totally melts my reserve. He just looks too darn cute and happy out there. Besides, we're at the beach! What's the point if you don't actually go out there and get in the water, right? So I venture out. In this case, I handed my camera off to Mom and Aunt Fay, who chose to remain under our beach umbrella.


Here is Tim's big tip for surviving the cold of the vast, open ocean: Embrace the cold. Just accept that the water is going to be freezing. In fact, imagine that the water is so cold that it will literally freeze your toes solid. Then when the water hits you, it won't feel quite so bad after all. An interesting strategy.

My survival strategy incorporates Tim's advice, but I also like to lift my arms in order to keep them dry as long as possible. I also yell, "YAAAR!" whenever a wave hits me. It's kind of a cross between a battle cry and a squeal. But it works! Want proof? On this trip I was the first in the family to completely submerge myself in the ocean. Long hair and all. Take that!

Tim, our own Pied Piper of the Sea called others into the ocean, too.

This was a really nice vacation. The family enjoyed it so much that we're planning to do the same thing together next year, probably further south so we can enjoy new area attractions. Can't wait!

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

OBX with the fam - part 4

Yes, I have more photos to share from the beach. This time I thought I'd feature the wildlife ... some of it a little more wild than others.

A real live starfish! Cassie touched it and everything.

I guess this is some species of gull? Maybe? It was a lot bigger than most of the birds on the beach.

Numerous times a day, a line of pelicans flew low right by the house. Dad called it Pelican Patrol. Unfortunately, my timing was terrible when it came to the pelicans. They always seemed to fly by just as I shut off my camera! This is the best pic I could snag of Pelican Patrol. Hope you had better luck, Dad.

This dog is named Honey. She likes to wear hats.

Crabs on the beach at night. Note that each one of these is bigger than your hand.

Crabs found in our pool during the day. Yes, in the pool! Five of them!

Run away, little crab. Run far, far away!

One afternoon we hired a guy who drives a monster bus - yes, you read that right - to take us to see the wild horses. There are no proper roads up there, so only 4x4 vehicles that can handle the sand are allowed.

The horses are allowed to roam freely in this 12-mile stretch of the island. There may be no roads, but there are still plenty of houses.

Monster bus! Woo!

Monday, June 01, 2009

OBX with the fam - part 3

It's been a whole week since we got back to the beach & I'm still in a funk. I miss it! I miss playing cards and splashing about in the waves and eating dinner at a big table full of my loved ones! But enough whining. On to the photos!

The weather stayed cool until Tim arrived on Wednesday, but we managed to find plenty to do. We realized that we could see the Currituck Beach lighthouse from our 3rd floor balcony ...

... so we moseyed on down the road to check it out in person.

The area around the base of the lighthouse was absolutely adorable. Great old houses, quaint landscaping, etc. I wish I'd documented it better. I managed to snag a cute shot of Fay, Sammy, and Buster, so that's got to count for something, right?

Just a hop, skip and a jump away from the lighthouse is the nature center. They have some interesting exhibits about the wildlife in the area. I was oddly entranced by the display of old swan decoys.

Some of these decoys are about 80 years old. A number of them are made of fabric stretched over a wire frame. I especially love the decoy on the top right. It's a swan butt! Tee hee. Did I mention that I am 5?

Here's the view of the area outside the nature center from the footbridge.

It may have been too chill to put on a swimsuit, but at least it was windy enough to fly kites.