05 August 2013

Cape Cod Vacation

During the final part of the IMLP run, one of the thoughts that put a little extra spring in my step was knowing that in less than a day, I will be relaxing on Cape Cod. Last year, Mr. Sweetie and I figured out the RIGHT way to do Ironman - do the race and then take a week of vacation afterwards to recover from it all. 2013 was going to be no different. My Uncle Charlie and Aunt Karen are pretty much the most awesome aunt and uncle on the face of the earth. They live about a mile from the ocean, set wayyyy back from the road, with a big yard, a pool, and a house with a screened in porch, huge deck, and lots of comfy couches. As a kid, they would have the four cousins (me, my brother, and my cousins Worth and Charlotte) down for a week every summer - it was known as Camp Beggs and it was way better than any sort of organized sleepaway camp. Back then, they lived right on a lake, and right near a bike path, and our days were spent swimming out to the raft on the lake, taking the sailboat out, playing bocce ball, croquet, badminton, going to the ocean (after seeing Jaws, typical), and riding our bikes a mile down the bike path to the General Store to blow our money on penny candy. We were a high energy bunch and I really don't know how Charlie and Karen put up with us for an entire week every summer - probably because they knew they could return us to our parents within 7 days.

Someday I'm sure we'll get all four cousins back at Charlie and Karen's, but last week it was just me, Mr. Sweetie, our dog, and my parents who were down visiting. Very low key. I was still pretty wrecked from the race during those first few days, so most of my activity centered around walking from the porch to the pool and back. If my dog could tell his version of vacation, it would be I was awake at 5:30am every day, ready to swim and I made sure everyone around me KNEW that I was ready to get my swim on RIGHT NOW. I've never met a dog that likes to swim as much as he does. I think it is going to take the pool filter a long time to recover from all of Miles' dog hair. Most of the time he didn't even need the incentive of a ball to chase into the pool - I'd just say "Ready... GO!" and he'd jump right in. I have the video to prove it, but I have no clue how to post videos to my blog so you'll have to take my word for it.

Big Pool
Kiddie Pool
The end result of all that swimming.
The highlight of each of my days was double-fisting a bag of chocolate chips and a bag of Heath Bar toffee bits first thing in the morning as I shuffled out to the porch. They were leftovers from this behemoth of a dessert - Chocolate Trifle. Layers of chocolate cake, chocolate/Kahlua pudding, Cool Whip, chocolate and toffee chips, and repeat. I thought about this dessert during parts of the Ironman Marathon and made it on Tuesday because I could not get it out of my head.

Chocolate Trifle. Essential to proper Ironman Recovery
I had goals for my vacation. Every day needs goals, right? Some days it was stay in your bathing suit until dinner and only then you can shower (check); finish the chocolate trifle while still leaving room for a pound of chocolate covered cranberries (check); play mini golf and, if you are lucky, beat Mr. Sweetie (half-check, if we stopped on the 9th hole, I would've won, sadly I fell apart on the back nine); eat ice cream and hot fudge (check); go to the beach (check); watch Jaws (check); play croquet (nope, didn't make that happen); eat lobstah (check); eliminate the bike shorts tan lines (check - they are faded, but I think they are permanently there no matter how often I wear a bikini).

We made a couple of trips over to Centerville to visit my grandmother. She is 86, but seems so much younger than her age. She also still keeps chocolate in her house and I raided her candy bowl, just like I've done since I was a kid. Visiting her house is like going back in time, it looks the way it always has, with so many pictures of when I was a kid, to the old Celtics pennant and fan tacked to her wall, noting that they played in the Boston Garden. A few blocks down the street from Grandma's is the Catholic Church Our Lady of Victory, where Mr. Sweetie and I got married almost seven years ago. And right next door to that is the best ice cream shop in the world - Four Seas! Homemade ice cream and homemade hot fudge, you can't ask for anything more than that! Our first stop as a married couple was to get ice cream. Priorities.

He looks a little less enthusiastic about sharing his ice cream in 2013 than he did in 2006
We had the best, most relaxing vacation anyone could ever ask for. It was so nice to see my parents again (it was much easier after the 4th of July to return home, knowing that I would get to see them once more in just a few weeks). The menfolk (Mr. Sweetie, Charlie, and Dad) spent alot of time at the golf course and it would seem that Charlie has found a new hobby to occupy his time now that he has retired from his dock-building business. Mr. Sweetie was more than happy to help Charlie discover the wonders of golf. My mom and Karen and I ventured into Chatham one day to do some shopping - I walked away with almost a pound of fudge, what seemed like a pound of chocolate-covered cranberries, and lobster-shaped lollipops. We also did some browsing of various preppy clothing stores - when did Lilly Pulitzer suddenly become trendy and what happened to their classic clothes?

Thank you so, so much Charlie and Karen for having Mr. Sweetie, Miles, and I down for a visit! It was absolutely the highlight of our summer and we were so sad to get in our car and come back to the DC swamp yesterday morning. It took a fair amount of coaxing to get Miles into the car - he knew he was leaving doggy paradise and he was not happy about it! You two are the most awesome aunt and uncle EVER and we miss you both already! Love you!


Beth said...

Sounds amazing!! Well deserved rest and relaxation. :) And I love the before and after ice cream pic of you and your hubby! :)

Caroline said...

Awww thank you Beth! You are always say the nicest things! I hope you are recovering well from 70.3 Steelhead! If you ever make it out to the Cape, visit 4 Seas, best ice cream ever!