Are you in the mood for fall yet? Every day there’s something more. The mornings are a little cooler, the breeze is a little more chilly, the sun seems just a tiny bit more remote. And I am loving every second of it.
What’s getting me in the mood even more is a bottle of Shipyard’s Pumpkinhead. Man, this is like drinking a beer form of pumpkin pie. I’m not usually a fan of pumpkin pie at all, but somehow it’s funkily delicious in beer form. Kurt’s not a fan, but I think it’s because it’s got a pronounced cinnamon flavor. That man hates everything cinnamon. I can’t even get a fall-scented candle for the house because the scent makes his throat close up. Poor guy.
We had some absolutely gorgeous weather this weekend too. Sunny afternoons, not a cloud in the sky, and that perfectly golden autumn light with just enough of a breeze to keep the temperature down. So what did we do with this wonderful weather? We went to see Karmacat!
See, she lives half the state away from me — but when you’re talking about a baby state like Rhode Island, it’s really not that far. We were at her place in under 45 minutes. She took us down to a beach near her home and introduced us to Iggy’s Clamcakes and Doughboys. Clamcakes, if you didn’t know, are sort of like a hush puppy with a clam inside, only not sweet like hush puppies can be. But clamcakes are big and round and puffy, not flattened like a crab cake. How confusing! Doughboys are fried dough, tossed with powdered sugar. We didn’t get any, not being dessert-type people, but we did get a double order of clamcakes. Nom.
KC teased me gently for getting clam strips instead of whole belly clams, but I just can’t do ’em. We had them at Flo’s when my dad’s neighbors came to visit last month. They’re just a wee bit too much like oysters for me. Clam strips on the other hand — definitely nom.
We’re so lucky to have so many delicious seafood restaurants nearby. Flo’s in the summertime, Anthony’s year-round, and now Iggy’s up north. My mother-in-law is in heaven when she comes to visit. Living in Tucson, she can only get frozen seafood, and it’s just not the same.
Yet another reason to always live close to the water. I’ve already decided that we need to retire near a coast. I don’t think I could handle being too far inland, though some days I really miss Nebraska. The people there are so wonderful, and it’s simply gorgeous out there, if rolling cornfields and stunning sunsets are your thing.
After lunch, we sat back to digest the deliciousness while Grace ran off some energy at the playground right next to Iggy’s. Of course, she was best buds with every little kid there as soon as she arrived. Wouldn’t it be great if we could all act like little kids sometimes? To be able to say to someone, “Oh hey! I like your shoes! Let’s be friends!” and end up close buddies. Making friends every time I moved would be so much easier. Maybe I’ll try that the next time we re-locate.
I’ll let you know how it goes.
What amazed me was we could see the Newport Pell Bridge from the deck of Iggy’s. It was a tiny speck on the horizon, but it was still recognizable as the bridge that I see almost every day. Kurt thinks it’s only about 10 miles to Iggy’s the way the crow flies, but unfortunately we have to take the highway to get there. Hence the 45-minute drive.
Surprisingly enough, it was pretty crowded at that beach, with folks eating at Iggy’s and kids running rampant over the playground. So KC decided to take us to her favorite beach, a secluded cove near her house. There was a playground there, this time with swings, so Grace’s head nearly exploded with excitement. And we let ME out of her stroller to wander around and enjoy the weather, so she was thrilled as well. Kurt and Grace ambled down to the water and found tiny crabs, only an inch or so in diameter, while KC and I talked about anything and everything.
I tell you what, though — ME can really move when she puts her mind to it. She was exploring the boardwalk while Grace headed back to the playground, and I figured she’d stay pretty close. I glanced at her to fix her position in my head, then back at KC to pay attention to the conversation. Not more than five seconds later, Kurt asked me how far I was going to let ME walk before one of us went after her. She had managed to get about thirty feet away, when just seconds before she’d been within five feet! I guess she wanted to join Grace on the swings.
We tired ME so much she was asleep by the time we got a mile down the road. We took KC back to her house, where she showed us the machine she uses in her court stenography classes. She even wrote out Grace’s name in shorthand, which looks absolutely nothing like G-R-A-C-E. She also read off some of her homework to us, which just looked like so many unrelated letters to us. It was pretty amazing to see her translating the shorthand on the fly to us.
All in all, it was a fabulous day. I couldn’t ask for better company, and I couldn’t have ordered better weather. And the scenery was to die for! That’s why I love Rhode Island so much… it’s just seriously gorgeous.
The one thing I don’t love about Rhode Island is the accents here. They’re a bit jarring to my ear, accustomed to a southern drawl as it is. Tonight I saw a funny commercial, for McDonald’s of all things, in which you can hear a tiny bit of the New England accent.
That commercial made me giggle. Folks here are proud of their traditions, and they’re not too fond of changing — which could probably explain why folks were such die-hard Red Sox fans throughout the 80-some years of post-season drought. The best part is when the guy says, regarding Manhattan chowdah, “… Never heard of it.” Indeed!
Though I giggled the hardest at the response someone left on the actual YouTube page: “McDonald’s or Dunkins? Dunkins.” Heh. That too.