Outer Banks vacation!

Here is my hastily assembled, poorly written, vastly incomplete Outer Banks vacation log.

hatteras trip


took off in the morning to head up to richmond.  christina let us all stay the
night while she visited her sister in charlotte.  as soon as we got to
christina’s house, kathryn opened the passenger door of the car and gonzo took
off.  he then immediately ran into the neighbor’s backyard and left a gift of
poop.  the mccubbins arrived at christina’s house and we then proceeded to let
the kids wreak havoc on the house. it took less than an hour to turn the
nicely organized kids’ play areas into disaster zones.


cleaned up the house, and packed up to finish the drive to rodanthe NC.  met
chris and angel at the realty – they arrived earlier but the realty would
not release the keys to them presumably because everything was in kathryn’s
name.  we got to the house, and it was really nice despite the rather plain
exterior and the junk-filled houses nearby.  we explored the beaches a bit
and enjoyed letting the iris and eris explore the sand and water.  this was
also gonzo’s first beach experience, and he was a bit scared of the surf
coming in.  kathryn ran up and down the beach with him – she looked as
happy as an eight year old girl. for dinner we ordered takeout from the asian
restaurant down the street. when i went to pick up the food i was surprised to
be served by a dreadlocked, blonde, slightly sun-worn white woman with an
australian accent – not what i was expecting to see serving sesame chicken and
teriyaki kebobs.  the women went out to the food lion in avon to stock up
on groceries for the week, and chris and i played DDR until we were
really bad at it.  later that night kathryn and i saw a really bright fireball
meteor – chris mentioned the possibility that it might have been an iridium
flare.  i saw the exact same thing 2 years ago at the house in salvo.
christina and her two kids arrived late (closer to midnight) – we were worred
she wasn’t going to find the place since she didn’t have a cell phone we could
call to give her directions.


we walked around the beach with iris in her backpack, and christina came with
us with maddie and ella.  all the kids enjoyed the beach quite a bit.  it was
maddie’s first time at the beach (the “big water”).  and karaoke revolution in
the evening.


went out to nag’s head in the morning with everone to visit jockey’s ridge, a
state park built around the big sand dunes there.  apparantly the sand dunes
move several feet south per year, so the property nearby is at risk of being
covered with sand.  a minigolf course is currently buried – its tallest
feature, a castle, is still visible in one section of the dunes.  kathryn and
i took iris in her backpack and walked to the top of the dunes where we saw
the view of pamlico sound, the hangliders, and folks flying kites.  met back
up with everyone and headed back to the house, stopping at a sushi restaurant
at a strip mall for takeout on the way (and a cigar shop to pick up some
smokes).  after eating lunch at the house and letting the kids nap, kathryn
and i took iris back to nag’s head – we wanted to hike a few of the wildlife
observation trails along the way but thunderstorms were rolling in all around
us.  we ended up driving through nag’s head and kill devil hills.  stopped at
a coffee place and then went to a electronica-themed music shop which also
specialized in snowboard sales and repair.  kathryn found an afghan whigs cd
she didn’t have, and i found a brand new paul oakenfold CD which had just been
released several weeks prior.  the shop clerk had a “thing for drum and bass”
and once was within beer-bottle-clinking distance from oakenfold when the
latter DJed live in DC with his eyes closed while drinking guiness.  one
section of CDs was blocked by snowboard equipment.  snowboarding equipment in
hatteras??  later we stopped at a minigolf place to play video games.  they
had a ddr game, and a cool boxing game where you wear gloves and your body
movements are detected – you have to duck and weave to avoid getting hit by
the game’s boxers.  kathryn loved that game and was saddened when the coin
slots jammed up.  that night after the kids went to bed we all played cranium
and kathryn and i got our asses kicked by the mccubbins.  i enjoyed a cigar
outside and ended up walking to the beach to absorb the sounds of the sea
while watching the surf wash over the sands like big hands spreading cards
over a giant table. lightning occassionally flashed far at sea, lighting up
the cloud banks in the distance.


we went to ocracoke island with christina and ella (chris and angel stayed at
the house and watched maddie and eris).  it rained most of the day but
cleared up as we were driving back home in the afternoon with the cranky
tired babies (of course).  took the ferry over and stopped at the same
seafood/burger joint we went to with the turmans two years ago. after stopping
at a candy store for sugary snacks and fudge, i took a quick look at the
british cemetery there (four british sailors recovered from the destruction of
a british ship loaned to the US during the early years of WWII). drove down
the island and explored the arts and crafts shops and found some interesting
decorative junk.  it was a fun day hanging out with our ol’ college
buddy.  got home, and later in the evening, chris and angel went out to a nice
mediterranean restaurant in kitty hawk for a date night while we listened out
for eris as she slept. christina, kathryn, and i played scattergories after
getting the kids to bed.  i enjoyed yet another cigar out on the windy deck.
now i am overfull with food and my lungs are good and gummy from smoking.
life is good!


hung out at beach with everone; had a date night at meridian 42 (“coastal
Mediterranean cuisine”) (http://www.meridian42.com/) – reminded us of the
Metro restaurant in downtown roanoke.


nature trail at wildlife refuge; kayak, followed by walk home eating sundae and
buying gifts; everyone else went to nicer beach across street from wildlife
refuge on pea island


getting screwed by sun realty; walk on beach with ella; walked on pier;
sun-worn fisherman dude sleeping on hard planks; bob’s grill (“eat and get
the hell out”); arcade


checked out of house; spent all morning packing and cleaning up.  on the drive
back, gonzo kept jumping into the front seat – had to pull over to put him
back in his gonzo-shaped hole in the pile of vacation stuff.  ate lunch at a
place called Mel’s Diner somewhere on route 168 – shiny retro-50s restaurant


breakfast in richmond with roger and michelle; kathryn and schmee slept in the
car almost the entire way back; freaky jewish dude staring at us at the gas

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