They got in late on Tuesday night. I don't think I slept a wink the night before, and the day was spent in rushing around trying to get everything ready for the visit. I told them (two over-6-foot black men with big appetites) that I'd have dinner waiting when they got there, and decided on roasted chicken and vegetables. Apparently there's some kind of private joke about black people loving chicken; I had no idea of this. But it was the first tome I'd ever cooked meat for The Man (last time I saw him, at Thanksgiving, I was still pescetarian!), so I wanted to do it right, and not to brag or anything but I am kind of the queen at roasting chickens.
I was so excited I forgot to take any pictures of this, but you guys have to try it! Joanne, I'm looking at you here. Followed this recipe from the indefatigable Mark Sisson, and holy gods is it ever worth the trouble. The secret is in smothering the bird with herbed butter - it's spectacular. The men got in just as everything was finishing up, so I turned off the heat, ran outside and performed my signature greeting-the-boyf move (I call it the run-and-jump; from his perspective it's probably the grab-and-spin. yes, so stereotypical rom-com, I know), then herded them inside to nom on delicious tender thyme-flavored bird and wash it down with this amazing $3 wine I found at WF. And there's another piece of heaven you guys need to visit as often as possible - homemade food and cheap wine consumed at the kitchen table around 10:30 pm, with good friends and plenty of laughter :)
So the next day, we went grocery shopping to stock up for the trip, then hit the road. Our friend Ellison had never been to NC before, so we stopped along the way to check out Duke Gardens and Duke Chapel, some more must-sees if you're ever in Durham. And then it was off to the coast, stopping only once to briefly stretch our legs. My baby Lucille is good for a lot of things, but I have to admit that she isn't big on leg room if the passengers are over 6 feet tall. We finally got to the motor lodge where we'd reserved a room, but the office was closed and we had to call the owner several times before she finally picked up - a bit of an annoyance, as it was cold and crazy windy, but she'd just gotten a new cell phone with an unfamiliar ring and literally ran from her house to the inn office to let us in! AND, on top of that, when we discovered that our room hadn't been cleaned from the previous guests, we got upgraded at no charge to one of the best rooms on the lot: oceanfront, with two queen beds and a full kitchenette.
And then, for the next day and a half, it was pure bliss. It was too cold (and part of the time, even stormy) to go swimming, but there were long walks on the beach and romantic dinners and an omelette-off between The Man and me (I won, hands down :D) and more cheap wine and LOTS more laughs. And there was the best way of all to hear "I love you:" first thing in the morning, with the sky barely beginning to glow and the sound of the surf in the distance, and the softest kiss on your forehead. (Whether or not this was to avoid morning dragon breath, I will not speculate).
|the only full day we had there it was stormy and freezing|
|chillin like they do|
Hey, if it gets me great shots like this, then I say it works :)
Bottom line? You've heard that quote about how "hell is other people," I'm sure. Well, as it turns out, the reverse is just as true.