What to do on a boring Sunday afternoon?
First off, I woke up late. I hate waking up late, I really do. I was doing so well for so long, getting up around 8:15am or so, getting straight into the shower, and getting Grace up for the day, all well before 9am. I felt like I was accomplishing something, even if it was just getting showered and dressed before my coffee was brewed.
Lately I’ve been sleeping in till 10. I feel so slothful and lazy when I do that, but somehow I manage to turn off my alarm when it goes off at 8. Or Kurt will forget to let the dog out before he goes to work, and the dog will bark until I let him out at 7:30. But there’s no way I can get up that early (remember, I don’t normally go to bed till midnight or 1am), so I end up falling back asleep and again shutting off my alarm. It’s a vicious cycle.
But finally I hauled my butt out of bed, checked some of my blogs, ate some breakfast, drank some coffee. I even managed to throw a couple of loads of laundry in the wash to boot! Now let’s see if I actually remember to pull them out of the dryer before bed tonight. I’m voting No.
Kurt came up with the brilliant idea of going exploring. Generally the rules of exploring are just to head away from home, and somehow figure out how to get back once you’re done seeing things. Maybe that’s boring to a lot of people, but it’s what I grew up doing with my dad almost every weekend. It’s fun! You get to see a lot of things you probably wouldn’t see otherwise.
We ended up today going to Mystic, Connecticut. It’s this neat little town with lots of shopping and a cool museum called Mystic Seaport. There are several tall ships docked there, and even a 19th-century town all laid out for the visitors to explore. We got there at 3:15pm — and it closed at 4. They were offering half-price admission, but even still, it wasn’t worth it. There was too much to see!! We explored around the museum store a bit, where I found deck prisms for sale. See, back when you had tall ships, sometimes you couldn’t have fire on board ship, especially if you were carrying something flammable like gunpowder. How were you going to see when you were belowdeck if you couldn’t light a lamp for fearing of igniting your cargo? That’s when they came up with deck prisms. They’re glass cones that are set flush in the deck, with the point towards the floor of the deck below, and they draw light from the outdoors down to the lower deck. How’s that for innovation?
I’m definitely going back there when we have more time to explore it, if only to take lots of photos of tall ships for everyone’s favorite pie-rat!
We then found downtown Mystic, complete with the original Mystic Pizza from the movie. We had a bit of a fiasco trying to park. There was only parallel parking available on the side of the street, which is normally no big deal. Kurt is an excellent parallel-parker, even in our long minivan. He tried to get in to this one particular spot, but for some reason, he couldn’t! He was either a million miles away from the curb, and in danger of having someone hit the back of the van, or he was way up on the sidewalk. We finally gave up and went looking for another spot, only there wasn’t one. We headed back down the street, saw that the original spot was open, and made a U-ie to come back to try one more time. By that time, someone else had taken the spot. Kurt grumbled a bit but kept looking for a spot, and on our second pass down the street, our original spot was open again! Kurt tried just one more time, and this time he parked perfectly.
We ended up spending less time walking around Mystic than it took to find our parking spot. There isn’t a whole lot down there for one, and then most of it was closed. It’s a Sunday, see, and a winter Sunday to boot. A few places are always closed on Sundays — which boggles my mind because wouldn’t Sunday be a good day to be open? It’s the day most people would want to come to Mystic and spend the day shopping. Other stores closed at 4pm on Sundays. We did manage to go into the Army-Navy Store, which amused me because they had a lot of things for sale that Kurt has at the house! It was neat to see some of the older uniforms, though.
Finally we decided to find some dinner. We’d gotten a map at Mystic Seaport that listed some good places to eat, and one of the ads featured a seafood and steak buffet. I had Kurt call them to see what kind of prices they had, and boy was I glad I had him do that!! He initially heard them say, “$16.95 for adults,” which is an awesome price. There were a couple of seafood buffets in southern Virginia that ran $25 each, which is what we were used to paying.
Kurt heard wrong. Very, very wrong.
Actual price for an adult? $69.95. Yes, folks, you had to be willing to pay $70 a piece to have all-you-can-eat lobster, steak, crab, and other assorted seafood. Grace’s meal would have been a bargain at $40!
Needless to say, we chose not to go there for dinner. Instead we went to another place featured on the map, one that was advertised as “where the locals eat.” Good thing we had our GPS in the van, else we never would have found the place. It was on this teeny little back road, tucked in among boats piled up in winter storage. You just sort of came around a curve, and bam! It was right in front of you.
The food was amazing, though. I got the spinach fettucine with lobster and scallops, garnished with tomatoes and asparagus, in a tarragon cream sauce. It was seriously to die for!! The scallops were done just perfectly. They were like butter in my mouth — buttah, I tell ya!! And you could tell it was real lobster meat; they left the claw meat intact. It was simply scrumptious.
We also voted not to get Grace a kids’ meal. Oh, they had all the regular standbys — grilled cheese, cheeseburgers, hot dogs, pasta with sauce, chicken fingers. Basically, kids’ food. Which is fine for most kids, but Grace is an adventurous eater. So instead we ordered her a bowl of creamy clam chowder, and then she had small portions of Kurt’s and my dinners as well. Our dinners came with a salad, which was amazingly good — dark, crisp green, croutons, and Gorgonzola cheese with balsamic vinaigrette. Grace ate most of my Gorgonzola for me; I’m not a fan of blue cheese, but she sure is!
I almost always get lemon with my water when we go out to eat, and tonight was no exception. Grace got irritated that I got something she didn’t get, so I had to get her a lemon as well. She ended up eating most of it, but not before making some really funny faces!!!