Thursday, August 7, 2014

Vacay Wrapup

Its been a week overdue, but this will wrap up my vacation.  I intended to ride a couple more times, but I woke up Thursday with a slightly stiff back so I skipped the bike and just decided to be a tourist for the day. Every trip to Maine, for as long as I can remember, has involved a trip to the local shoe store for a pair of new school sneakers from my mom.  Despite the fact that I am 42 and haven't been in school for more than 15 years, I made the trek to Belfast with my mom and 2 nephews. We hit Olympia Sports to look for our new kicks.    I took the longest because the pair I wanted weren't in stock so I had the dubious task of deciding on the black or red instead of the blue model. It required a second trip back to the stockroom.  I have to say, shoe shopping with boys is fun because we were literally done with shopping in 5 minutes.  I have done the shopping gig with my two nieces before, and it is always way more time consuming.  Here's to the power of being a dude!

After shoes, we walked next door for a trip around Reny's before hitting we hit Wasse's Hotdogs (a mid coast tradition!) for lunch.  In my humble opinion, no trip to Penobscot Bay is complete without a stop at both of these businesses.
View from the Temple Heights Beach... its been less than a week and I am already looking to head back

That evening I headed inland to visit with one of my best friends. We met in the summer of 1990 when we were both scrubs at the Lobster Pound Restaurant. Back in the day, I was a fry cook and he was out in the lobster area. Over the next 5 summers, we grew our friendship that has somehow endured, despite the fact that we tend to see each other only 1 time a year, and sometimes go a couple years without crossing paths. The last time we got together, he was showing off his newborn son, Levi.  His son is now over 3 years old and an absolute wrecking ball. Man was it great to catch up with him.
Tim, Jaimie, & Levi dropped in to visit the rest of the fanily at Temple Heights. 

Friday, the stiff back that I was hoping would have mended was feeling worse than ever. Again I decided the prudent thing to do would be to skip the ride since I was planning on heading home later that night. My nephew Nate decided he was going to go for a short run and Patrick didn't want to go.  For some stupid reason I thought it might be good to go run with him, despite the fact that I heard him say he was hoping to be around 7 minute mile pace. I quickly introduced him to Strava for his phone, and we were off. I tried hanging with him, but around the 1/2 mile mark, both my nephews (Patrick decided to join us afterall) started to slowly pull away. At the one mile mark, they turned around (I did too, but well short of the 1 mile mark) it wasn't long before they were catching me and passing me. I tried hard again to stay with them, but they just casually dropped the old man behind them in their dust. They finished with a 7:36/mile pace and I finished with about an 8:28/mile pace.
Shadow Selfie on the "beach" at Temple Heights, Maine

Shortly after we got back my sister Amy arrived from Indiana, PA. With her were my nieces, Abbey and Eliza, as well as Eliza's boyfriend and on of Abbey's friends. Mom and Dads quiet little cottage were suddenly bursting with activity. While I was sad that I was going to miss spending time with everyone, I was not going to miss the whirlwind of activity that was beginning to take place. And then Sunday Morning, my other sister, Heidi was arriving from Waynesburg with her husband, her other son, his friend, and her daughter. Only Amy's husband and I were not going to be there at the same time this year.  Add to the mix their puppy and I can only imagine the neighbor's impression of the Gernert Clan.  I know the Temple Heights Spiritualists are considered by most to be a little off their rocker, but I'm thinking that the locals would gladly exchange the worst of the spiritualists for the best of the Gernerts (naturally this would mean me).
Friday afternoon on the beach. This obviously is before Heidi and her Motley Crue arrives.

Dad and I hit the Lobster Pound for one last lunch, then mom served up clam chowder for dinner and I was on my way home. I stopped at LL Beans in Freeport, Maine and picked up a "stowable" backpack. Its not that I needed another backpack, I have probably 10 others, but this one had a pack within the pack. I'm hoping this will work well with the bike this fall and winter as I plan to do more of my daily activity via the bike. But that sounds like another blog in the making....
One last Maine Selfie (yes, I was stopped) before departing for points South