Back To the Real World

And mountains of laundry await…

Yep, The Raptor Clan just got back from our annual family vacation. ‘Twas nice to have everyone all together again, and I daresay this will probably be the last time this will happen. Little Brother’s in college now, so we don’t see him much, and I just graduated (w00t!) so I’ll hopefully be heading out on my own soon (as soon as gainful employment and money allow it), so family vacations will soon become a thing of the past.

Anyway, we spent the week down in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Mama Raptor’s Sister owns a really nice beach house down there, and she graciously gave it to us for the week free of charge. It’s literally right on the beach. No lie, that house is awesome. I could rant and rave about it… but that’s a post for another time. One cool thing (in my opinion) about her place is that it’s pretty much spitting distance from Camp Lejeune, and right under the flight pattern for the USMC’s training exercises. We had AV-8B Harrier jump jets buzzing the house a couple times a day, and a CH-64 flew over the beach on Friday. That was pretty sweet.

Aside from the USMC, it was a nice and quiet week (not that I minded the jets, of course: that, to me, is the sound of freedom and I never get sick of it). Walked the beach multiple times a day, explored all the little towns nearby, discovered that I really like scallops, and ate more fried shrimps and scallops than any sane person probably should. Thank God I’ve got the metabolism of a hummingbird. Oh yeah, speaking of food, we found this great restaurant called (IIRC) Rucker John’s. One thing they had on the menu that I absolutely loved was a basket homemade croissants liberally drizzled in something called Honey Butter. Oh man, you haven’t lived until you’ve tried that.

One thing that happened on this vacation was quite unexpected. I had a revelation/discovery: I really, really want a sailboat. Not one of those dinky little Sunfish boats, but an honest-to-goodness yacht. I don’t mean a huge 150+ foot yacht that has dozens of cabins and needs a large crew to said, but a simple 30- to 40-footer that I could handle myself, with one cabin and a galley belowdecks. Something about sailing just… I don’t know… is enticing to me. Out there, all alone, peace and quiet, nothing but me and the ocean… that sounds pretty nice. I think I’ve even come up with the perfect name for my boat, too. Don’t laugh: it’s Serenity.

I said don’t laugh.

Anyway, I really like the south. Everything’s slower-paced, the people are really nice, the food is to die for (seafood in the east, BBQ further inland), Conservative politics, guns as an accepted part of society (seriously, how many gun stores do you seen on Main Street north of the Mason-Dixon Line). If the sailboat thing doesn’t work out, I think I’ll move down there…

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