Wow, it hardly seems like two weeks have gone by since the last post but they have! Things have been a bit hectic with seeing all the people we wanted (and needed) to see but we did sneak in a little time in New Hampshire at Hampton Beach and now we're on Cape Cod for a couple days.
Let me see...we headed for Hampton Beach, NH, after church on Sunday August 3rd. We arrived around 4:30pm in a driving rainstorm...a harbinger of things to come. Trying to find our camp site in the rain was fun...narrow roads and trees and a BIG RV. I nearly took out a stop sign (it was two feet high and impossible to see from the driver's seat) trying to make a tight turn. Ended up backing up and doing a complete loop through the campground until I found the site. Got the rig backed in and parked, put the brake on and lowered the jacks/stabilizers to level the RV. They sunk about 3 inches deep in wet sand. Tried a few more times with no success so we spent the 5 days in NH slightly off level. Now I have some wood blocks in case we have that problem again.
The rain let up around 5:30pm so we headed off to the beach for a quick dinner and to browse some shops and play a few games in the arcades. We accumulated tickets playing skee-ball and other games and redeemed them later in the week for a Red Sox basketball for Grace to roll around.
Monday morning looked promising so we went back to the beach around 11am. It was partly cloudy with thunderheads passing by periodically but we didn't get rained on. It was warm (around 80) and the water was nice. Grace played in the sand but she refused to let me bury her as she shook off all the sand every time I tried. We headed back to the campground around 3pm and did some grocery shopping and prepared for some of Kate's relatives to arrive and join us for a cookout of brats and burgers.
Tuesday was a "date day" for me and Kate. Her mom came along to the campground with us to watch Grace while Kate and I went for an overnight at the beach. We drove from Hampton, NH to York, Maine before finding a vacancy at a small hotel with an oceanfront room. The room wasn't special but the view was great and we enjoyed sitting on the balcony, reading, and listening to the crashing waves. Wednesday morning we had a breakfast at the Lobster Cove (compliments of our hotel) before visiting York Beach and getting some coffee and browsing the shops. It started to rain about 10am and so we headed for the outlets in Kittery, ME to get some shorts for both of us. It poured and poured all the while and the parking lots were filled with angry Canadiens from Quebec who had come to Maine for a sunny week at the seashore and got dumped on. After that we went back to NH and our campsite, where we spent the rest of the day complaining about the rain.
Thursday was yet another rainy day! We spent most of the day at the campground while Kate's mom and dad took off for Lobster and seafood (he drove up Thursday morning). We decided to give them the RV for the night and we took Grace and went to the Ashworth By the Sea in Hampton Beach. The weather wasn't good enough for any beach time but the rain broke for about three hours and we walked around all the shops, won Grace a new bear, and spent an hour listening to a band called Diggity Dawg play at the Hampton Beach Bandstand.
We awoke Friday morning to more rain, with a few sun breaks. By 11am it had not cleared much so we went back to the campsite and packed up to go back to Western Mass. It rained most of the way back and we arrived around 5pm.
We finally had a sunny day on August 9th as we celebrated birthdays for my niece April (6th) and Grace (2nd...on 9/16). We decided that day to leave a few days early and go to Cape Cod in hopes of getting some sunshine and beach time. Sunday and Monday were filled with yet more rain. It seems global climate change has hit New England as this has been the wettest summer in anyone's memory. There have been either totally rainy days or violent thunderstorms for about 21 of the last 26 days.
We left Chesterfield for the Cape on Tuesday around 11:45am and arrived at our campsite just after 3pm. The weather was beautiful. After getting set up we called my uncle and headed for his summer home in the mid-Cape area. We got there about 5pm and enjoyed a wonderful evening drinking wine, eating cheese, and catching up on what has been happening with everyone. Today was yet another beautiful day on the Cape. We went to Falmouth to take care of some business (I was offered faculty housing at MSU beginning September 1...YAY!) and look for a good beach for Grace. We failed in the latter but got back to the campsite about 1:15pm and waited for a friend of Kate's to arrive from the Boston area. She got there about 3pm and we headed to the beach a bit later. We went to Sandy Neck beach in Sandwich (really rocky but calm) and let Grace play in the water for a bit before relaxing in our chairs and chatting for an hour or so. We came back to camp around 6pm and cooked supper and hung out a while longer. Her friend left just before 8pm and Kate has been watching the Olympics since then (yeah, the campground has cable tv hookups).
The weather is supposed to be a bit iffy tomorrow...cloudy with a 30% chance of rain, temps in the 70's. The tentative plan is to go to Provincetown and get some wonderful baked Portuguese bread and goodies, spend some time at the beach, and take a whale watching cruise. If the weather doesn't cooperate we'll likely skip the cruise and end up just wandering around P'Town or checking out lighthouses on the Cape Cod National Seashore.
Friday we head for our nation's capital with plans to visit a couple Smithsonians and the National Archives, catch the Red Sox at Camden Yards in Baltimore, and then head for Virginia Beach next week. Our arrival date in Starkville is now August 29th since we have a house waiting for us.
Hope all is well with everyone...