Tuesday, August 31, 2010
We have just spent two days in Arnold, MD right outside of Annapolis with Joel's cousin Jill and her husband Dino and lovable daughter Lexie...what a great time they showed us!! I will start there and work backwards as our fun/down time with family was way more fun than the riding time to get there:) We arrived mid afternoon on Sunday and were immediately greeted with hugs and snacks! After a delicious dinner of steamed/spiced shrimp and burgers and corn and a salad we headed to a local beach to watch a sunset and of course look for beach glass...found some! By the way, Jill is a more accomplished collector than I; her house is filled with jars and bowls of beautiful shards. She and Lexie were so kind to give me a purple piece...Thanks! On Monday, Lexie had to go to school and Jill to work and we were treated to a day of touring the Chesapeake Bay region with Dino who took us over the Bay Bridge (4 miles of spectacular vistas) to the Eastern shore of Maryland and Terrapin Park where we walked through marsh trails to the waterfront. Joel snapped some great photos my favorite being the butterfly (remember La Mariposa??) and the blue crab. Oh, and we found more beach glass...lots! Dino is very knowledgeable of the area and so much fun to be with! Once the girls got home we took right off again and headed into Annapolis to poke through the shops and galleries, enjoy a nice meal, and tour through the prestigious Naval Academy; quite impressive. Lexie showed us her skills as a budding gymnast as she flipped and twirled around the HIGH bars on campus. Bravo! Home again in time for brownies and ice cream before bed for all. What a day! Thanks so much to the Delvisco family:)
Ok, back to the ride on Sunday to get to Arnold. A couple of things stick out in my mind...first of all, early on in our day we cycled past the McCormick Spice Factory near Monkton, MD and our senses were tickled by the fragrances of cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon etc as well as basil and oregano and the like. Later on in the day we came upon the city of Baltimore. We missed a turn at some point and were helped back on our way by an energetic woman cyclist whose great grandparents lived in and are buried in Rome! She took us right through the campus of John's Hopkins University which is exceptionally stunning. The two negative things in our day were the oppressive heat (for me at least!) and the terrifying bridge we had to cross to get out of Baltimore. The heavy traffic combined with the shaky steel structure really rattled my nerves! The latter part of the ride, however, was delightful because we were on two long trails that led us towards Annapolis. We met two great men on bikes who rode and chatted with us for several miles before we took a break to have a shaved Hawaiian Ice! Only 44 miles for the day but it seemed like forever. Thank goodness for Jill and Dino and Lexie at the end!!