Tuesday, August 17, 2010

To Durham and Beyond: Part Two-Durham...(and Beyond!)

We got to Stu and Becky's apartment at dinner time, and after hugs and exclamations all-round, we sat down to some delicious "top-your-own" pizza! (a Pitman favorite!) After dinner, we went for a quick swim and then settled in for commune living at its best. The guys gave the babies their baths, while we cleaned up the kitchen and packed our overnight bags for our weekend beach trip that would begin the next morning. (Catching up, sharing stories and enjoying our time together all the while!) Iain loved their HUGE bathtub, but was a little concerned about Courtney's zest for the bath, demonstrated by much splashing! After the kids were in bed, we had some dessert and watched some Arrested Development (another Pitman favorite) and lounged around a bit. This would set the pattern for most of our week in Durham! With the exception of our fun weekend at the beach, we mainly did three things: swim, eat, and sleep! It was delightful!

At 7am the next morning, we left for Wilmington, and Wrightsville Beach! After a quick stop at McDonald's for some Egg McMuffins and iced coffees, we were beach bound!! We packed a cooler of lunch and snacks, many pails, shovels, floaties and water toys for the babies, sunscreen, body boards and swimsuits, and headed for the coast. Sadly, the one thing we all forgot was...the CAMERA! We bought a disposable on Saturday night, but who knows if we'll ever find a place that still develops 'em! So once again, those memories will have to live on...in our memories! We spent the day on the beach, alternately watching babies make sand castles, swimming, sunning, body-boarding, and shell-seeking. Drat. Sure wish we had pictures of all this fun!

After we were beached-out, (and sun-kissed to boot!) we headed to our hotel for the night (an oddly furnished two-room suite, with an eclectic mix of country touches, down south "charm", a beachy vibe, and something else indistinguishable!) and showered up for dinner. That is when we realized JUST how burned we were! We were determined to get some fresh seafood, so we headed to "Jones Fish Camp" to eat, after much deliberation, reviews and reccomendations! Between the four of us, we tried flounder, whitefish, shrimp, clams, crab and oysters. Not to mention hush-puppies, baked potatoes, fries and veggies! And the babies tried it all too. Odd, that Iain will eat hardly anything we offer him, but dip it in batter and fry it...and he'll eat him an oyster! After a quick stop at the store for some dessert items (read: LOTS of candy!) and some beach equipment for the next day, it was back to the hotel and bed for the babies, (after a bath in our (SURPRISE) whirlpool tub!) and the Food Network for us!

We all slept like the dead, and the next morning it was back to the beach after breakfast. Alas, our idyllic day in the sun was not to be repeated, and it started to thunder, lightening, and POUR rain about an hour in. We packed it up and hit the town to explore some shops. After a delicious lunch at a Baja Mexican place (Mexican is our go-to when Pitman vacations get rained out!) we headed back to Durham, sad for our rained-out beach day, but happy with the fun we'd had.

After the weekend, it was back to work for Stu, and our days took on a similar shape of napping when the babies napped, quick shopping trips or errands in the afternoons, MUCH time at the pool, and delicious home-cooked meals, or patronizing various local joints for dinner. The pictures of the week are few and far between, because we didn't do much "out of the ordinary", so we kept forgetting to take pictures, and in essence, forgetting that being together was now in itself out of the ordinary. I wish we'd taken more, and hope that the trusty disposable will turn up some treasures, but for now...here's what our week looked like in a nutshell.

SWIM: We arrived in Durham in a "break from the heat", so weather was a balmy 95 degrees, instead of the mid 100s they had been having, but it still felt pretty hot and humid to us! So...we spent a LOT of time in their lovely apartment pool!

EAT: One of our nightly restaurant forays: HOG HEAVEN!
We thought we couldn't make trip to the south without some southern BBQ, (and of course sweet tea!) so we inquired as to where to go. The reply? "If you want the BEST barbecue in Durham...you've gotta go to HOG HEAVEN"I can't vouch for BEST, since we only went to the one place...but it WAS darn good!

MORE EAT: (We ate a lot...!) On our last night, we went to "Broad Street Cafe", a somewhat dive-y looking place with GOURMET food! Between us we sampled: the sweet potato fries with aioli, margherita pizza with tomato slices and fresh basil, Jamaican jerk pizza with jerk chicken, pineapple and red onion, and pizza vichyssoise, with sliced potatoes, fresh herbs, leeks, shallots and Gorgonzola cheese. It was all AH-MAZING!

SLEEP: We did a lot of THIS too...but this is the only photo we have!

Thursday morning, it was time to say our fond farewells, and pack up for the return journey. (Stay tuned!) We were going home via South Carolina, which was not really on the way, (being SOUTH, and Iowa being NORTH!) but it was home to a great (free!) hotel, and a cool little city that we were itchin' to explore. It's good that we still had fun to look forward to, or saying good-bye would have been even harder. The three weeks since we had seen them felt like a lifetime, so I don't know how we'll make it until Christmas, or longer! Dear family, thank you for having us, for giving up your bed, for cooking us delicious dinners, for showing us the sights of your new town, and for being fun to hang out with! We love you, and can't wait to visit again!

1 comment:

  1. Glad you had a great time in Durham! Wish we could've seen you while you were here. Funny enough, after 3 years of living here, we've never been to Hog Heaven OR Broad Street Cafe..looks like we need to check them out! :)