Saturday, June 22, 2013

A Milestone

I'm very late in posting this but I wanted to get the vacation posts out of the way. But on June 11, 2013..Shane turned 14 years old.  I think that is a big deal.  I honestly don't know a whole lot about his first 13 years. But I do know more than I care too about the last 4..and they certainly were not good..deplorable actually.
So we figure this was his best birthday in a long, long time.  And to have a greyhound reach 14..that is something!
So Happy Birthday, Shane (belated).  He is a good boy with a great personality.  I wish he'd have had more of opportunities to be a "Meet and Greet" dog before his back legs became too weak to stand for too long.  He really does love attention!
So we are happy to have spent this birthday with him!  We think we've managed to shove in a lot of "the good life" for him in the last 6 months...

Happy Birthday, Shane!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Maine-ly Subarus

Two things were oddly noteworthy from our trip to Maine.  One, the sheer number of Subarus.  Not just a lot..but everyone owned one.  Easily two out of every 3 cars was a Subaru..and generally a newer one.  So we felt at home!  Also, the number of businesses who used the "Maine-ly" title.  Maine-ly used cars, Maine-ly sweaters, Maine-ly yarn, etc.  It became comical. continue out trip north!
Our first stop was Pemaquid Point and Lighthouse.  When planning, I had assumed this would be our least favorite. But it was by far the most fun.  The tide was out and there were rocks to climb on.  I don't know why we become 'rock climbers' on vacation.  But we do..find a rock..climb it.
 We went to the top of the lighthouse.  You can see the rocks that will be conquered.
 And then a look from that far point back towards the lighthouse
 We were climbing fools.
 It was beautiful from that vantage point however
Then we went to Marshall Point lighthouse which is famous for being featured in Forrest Gump.  It was the 'end' of the East coast run for him.  They had a book showing the filming and such.  It was neat
 The lighthouses were all run by volunteers, so we were able to chat with them.  The final lighthouse was Rockpoint which had a long breakwater.  I will be honest..we were exhausted by this time. so we walked a little ways..but it was too far!  It was still pretty!  That is the lighthouse on the right (white dot) and the rock in the center of the photo has a sea lion basking on it.
Then we hit our final destination. Hartstone Inn in Camden, Maine. 
 Camden is a very cute little "mayberry' type town.  It was just a block away from our Inn so we walked around a bit.
Mayberry with a harbor
But we made it back in time for evening cocktail hour!
 The next day we were supposed to take a boat ride on the schooner Surprise.  But Hurricane/Tropical Depressioin Andrea had different ideas.  it wasn't raining, but the seas were too rough.  But I had chatted with the captains a while, so they asked us to come visit the boat and hang out a bit. 
We had a little more time to kill so we drove up to the top of Mt. Battie. it is the tallest 'hill' in Camden and allows great views.
 That afternoon, Jason participated in the Chef for a Day with Chef Michael Salmon.  This is WHY we did this trip.  Chef Michael is a great chef who opens his kitchen up to anyone who'd like to learn.  So Jason spent the afternoon cooking for the evening's dinner.  This Inn is ranked in the top 10 fine dining B&B's in the world and top 10 overall B&Bs in the USA.  So he was very excited.
 The kitchen was small but there were 2 sous chefs, the head chef and Jason in it.  I snuck in and out and took photos.
One of the sous chefs talks to Jason about making the perfect risotto.
Dueling whisks
I was so busy taking photos, I didn't even notice they were offering me a taste of the dessert.  I found this photo and laughed.  I guess we were both in our elements!
 I love this photo.  All four chefs busily working.  Jason spent 1PM-5PM with the team making a wonderful dinner.  They were all super nice.  Chef Michael is a great person with a lot of patience. 
 After a shower, we had dinner.  A bad slice of quiche at lunch prevented me from enjoying it completely...but I was very proud of him! 

 The next day we went north to Acadia National Park with a stop for lunch in Bar Harbor.  The Tropical Depression had hit and the weather was less than desirable. So we really didn't see much.  We want to go back so we can see more..this park would have been incredible on a pretty day.  The one place that was photo worthy was "Thunder Hole".  on the other side of the railing is a 'hole' that the waves hit and makes a loud clap.
 More Rocks!  So wish the sky was blue!
 the weather was perfect for 'wave watching' we just sat on the rocks and enjoyed the crashing waves.  All the other lookouts were blocked by fog/clouds. 
Thunder hole
If you are ever in Camden and want an excellent Inn run by wonderful, caring people..go to Hartstone Inn.  We rarely/if never stay the same place twice or even go back to the same place..but we have plans to go back here and see more of the area. 
 This was our 'big' vacation of the year beyond a few long weekends at greyhound events.  But in a strange twist, Jason will be going to Chester, England for 7 weeks (August/September). So suddenly, I'm planning a vacation to England and Scotland in August.I feel sure Cali will go in to a terrible funk without Jason around for so long.  But we did get a lot of practice last year with holding down the fort while he was away for weeks at a time. But this will be the longest.  But very exciting!!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Boston Strong

 We took a long weekend vacation to Camden, Maine. But so many photo-worthy things happened, I've split this blog in to two.  We started in Boston and just spent one day there. Who knew so much could happen/be seen!
We started at the Boston Marathon Memorial. it is a temporary one, of course, but ti was very large.
Everyone had left their tennis shoes and hats.
 It was a beautiful day in the harbor (or harbah..what happened to the "R" in boston???)
The swans were nesting
 Then we hit the original Cheers bar for a "beah"
 While at the bar, we noticed everyone had put their business cards on a strip above the bar.  So we couldn't resist putting a James River Greyhounds business card on the strip. So Dana and Henry will be a part of the Cheers bar for years to come!
Then we went to Bell in Hand which is supposedly the oldest tavern in the country.  They had the windows open so we had another "beah"
 That night we met some of Jason's friends for dinner.  While we were waiting we stumbled upon a comedy show at Quincy Market.  And the comedian happened to 'need a strong volunteer'.  Guess who he chose!  Luckily, Jason is a ham and had a good time with it. The set up with photos and then a video.  Magic Brian was going to get out of a straight jacket and chains in 'record time'.  So he needed Jason to help him get in to it. he had another girl there too.  So he told Jason he'd introduce him and Jason was to dance in, bow, roar and then the crowd would chant.  The video of this part is at the end.  But after Jason came in
Magic Brian jumped in to the straight jacket
Jason strapped him in
Add the chains
And of course, he got out in record time!  
But here is the video of the beginning part.  at the end, Magic Brian says "you looked ridiculous" it was awesome.  He later told us Jason was the model assistant

 Afterwards, he was just too excited to contain himself!
 The next day we headed up the coast to Maine.  We turned the 3 1/2 hour trip in to a 9 hour trip. Hence, the multiple blog posts! so I will end this one with our first two stops..Lobstah rolls!  We stopped at Red Eats in Wiscasset, Maine.  It was good but I liked the next stop better. But the view was insane
 Then we went to Shaw's Lobster Wharf in New Harber, ME.  It was my favorite.
 It also had a neat view of a working harbor
 So to be continued..we continue on up the coast hitting a bunch of lighthouses and ended at the Hartstone Bed and Breakfast in Camden.  Jason cooks for the chef!