My wife, Becky, and I just returned from a week’s vacation in Delaware. To say it was a departure from our usual type of sojourne is putting it mildly. First off, we stayed at the vacation getaway home of my wife’s girlfriend, Denyse’s boyfriend, Joe. Denyse is gluten intolerant; Joe and Becky eat “normally”; and I’m on my special diet. We brought three big boxes filled with spices, canned goods, and other foodstuffs, as well as two coolers. Their food was already there. I cooked some; they cooked some; and we ate out once. And we ate plenty! Hey, it’s vacation. (I made sure to take my two-to-three-mile walk/run each morning, so gaining weight wasn’t an issue. Not having to negotiate any hills was an added treat.)
In all the years we lived in New Jersey, neither Becky nor I had ever been to Cape May. As of last Monday, that is no longer the case. The ferry ride from Lewes, Delaware (pronounced Lewis) to Cape May, New Jersey took an hour and a half each way. The bay was calm and the trip uneventful. We walked around the shopping mall for a while before we split up and went our separate ways. Denyse and Joe remained in the mall area, while Becky and I toured the many blocks containing the beautiful old Victorian houses we’d heard so much about. Here are just a few of them.
We lunched at the historic Cape May Inn, located just a block from the water, and I had what I consider to be the best lunch I’ve ever eaten. It consisted of a fried grouper sandwich, hand-cut French fries, and homemade cole slaw. On the ferry ride over, I had ridden up top, in the open air. On the return trip, I decided to go inside the ferry and was delighted to find that the Giants-Cowboys football game was showing on the HD TV, so I watched the first half onboard the ship, and then caught the second half back at the house. Doesn’t get an better than that.
On several evenings, we did the “boardwalk thing” in nearby Rehoboth Beach, and strolled along, hand-in-hand, alternately gorging ourselves on frozen yogurt, chocolate treats, and so forth. Oh, and not a drop of rain. Watching an episode of Showtime’s hit series, Narcos, each evening made me feel right at home. Our hosts were magnanimous in their indulgence of my TV proclivities, as well as those concerning my diet.
Oh, I almost forgot. Our friends had two delightful dogs with them: Duncan, a 14-year-old Maltese, and 17-week-old Toby, a Havanese-Yorky purebred. Both were terrific, especially Duncan, who, because of his advanced age, rode along the boardwalk in a stroller pushed by his “Daddy.” Duncan attracted lots of dog lovers, each of whom stopped us so they could meet and pet him. Toby pulled his “Mommy” along by his leash.
With three days remaining in our stay, our hosts left to return to New Jersey, leaving us with the house all to ourselves. We took the opportunity to drive down to Ocean City, Maryland, to visit an old friend.
He treated us to lunch at a waterside restaurant, and then the three of us took a ride to Assateague Island, the home of the wild mustangs. Luck was with us, and we got to see a number of the small, wild horses. What a treat!
Finally, it was time to leave. So, on Thursday morning, we departed for home. Our original itinerary called for an overnight stay at a motel, somewhere around the halfway mark. Instead, however, we stopped in Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia, to spend the night with Becky’s niece and her family. We met them at a middle school volleyball game, and totally surprised our great nephew and great niece, neither of whom knew were were coming. Dinner was at Chick fil A, and then back to the house for schmoozing, family style. Later, I lucked out, and caught most of the Jets-Bills game, before hitting the sack.
Friday morning, we said our goodbyes and started the five-hour drive home. When we got there, our cats greeted us tentatively (as only cats can do), before serenading us with endless purring, while rubbing their furry selves against our legs. It was good to be home—for all of us. Of course, we have already started thinking about “next year,” but for now the lovely memories we made will have to suffice. For me, it’s back to putting my nose to the grindstone, as I put the finishing touches on my publishing company’s latest book release, Manhattan North Narcotics, and gear up to finish my fifth Matt Davis mystery, Deadly Ransom.
Thank you, Lord, for watching over us—and our “kitties,”—and bringing us home safely. What a wonderful vacation.