Tag Archives: outdoors

Easy like a Sunday morning

We were up early on Sunday, before 7 AM. It was bright, sunny and warm out, a prelude to a perfect weather day. We had an early breakfast in the dining room. What a spread they have! All kinds of breakfast foods, buffet style, including a number of southern specialties like biscuits and gravy, and grits. We ate and then decided to take a walk into the town of Hot Springs.

The town was desolate. It was a single strip, with businesses on either side, all of which were closed today. In style, it reminded me a lot of Katakolon, Greece, when I was there this summer. Except that there were no people in Hot Springs. Or open shops. Or body of water nearby for that matter. It took five minutes to walk through town and then we walked back and decided to walk up around the perimeter of the resort. It made for a pleasant morning walk.

At 10 AM, we had massages scheduled. Most of the soreness from my renewed strength training efforts had subsided. We arrived at the spa at about 9:50. We were each led in the separate wings, Kelly into the women’s wing and I into the men’s wing. I changed into a robe and waited about 5 minutes before I was called in for my massage. It was the 6th massage of my life. It was not as good as the last two I had on the cruise ship, but it was still very relaxing and I enjoyed it. After the massage, I sat in the serenity lounge and a few minutes later, Kelly came in, her massage finished. We sat there for a while, and then I went to the showers. After my shower, I went into the steam room. It was very relaxing.

We had a quick lunch by the pool, and then went for a 2-hour hike on the “South Trail”. The hike took us past the horse stables, and through some very pretty wilderness. It was not a tough hike, but it was strenuous enough so that we could skip the gym today. When we got back from the hike, we went back to the pool and had a few drinks. Then we waited in front of the resort for a shuttle to take us back to the horse stables. We’d signed up for horseback riding. We got to the stables and were assigned a horse. Kelly rode “Micky” and I rode “Sport”. There were about 9 people in our group. I’d never ridden a horse before, but I got the hang of it pretty quickly. My horse followed Kelly’s horse and Kelly’s horse was the smart one, staying in the middle of the trail and not really drifting off the way some of the horses did. I must admit I was a bit nervous, but it was still fun. The ride took about an hour and when I finally got off the horse, I was saddle sore!

Back to the hotel to change into our swim suits and then we headed to the pool. We found some lounge chair and sat basking in the sun. I ordered a couple of strawberry maragaritas while we lay there. And when I got hot, I jumped into the pool to cool off. We spent almost 2 hours there before heading back to the room to get ready for the cookout.

The cookout was great. We were seated at 7 PM at a table with a family with twins girls and another couple. Kelly “outed” the couple. She asked how long they had been together and the girl said, “Oh, we’re not together”. But given the way she said it, and given other subtle hints, Kelly and I were sure that they were having some kind of affair. The food was great. All kinds of delicious comestibles. I had shrimp and hot dogs and hamburgers and ribs. I chocolate cake and delicious rum balls. Both Kelly and I were stuffed and had to forcibly remove ourselves from the table, lest we do further damage.

We discovered that the fireworks would take place out over the driving range, so while people gathered in the cookout area to watch the fireworks, Kelly and I went back up to our room, which overlooked the driving range. We ended up with a perfect, birds-eye view of the fireworks display, which lasted about 10 minutes, the perfect end to a perfect day.

Great Falls

Saturday brought us some nearly perfect spring weather. Despite that, I did my best to sleep in. I slept really well Friday night, and wanted it to continue, so I slept in until around 9:30 AM. It felt great.

Kelly had the great idea of heading over to Great Falls National Park, which is not far from where she lives. We headed over late in the morning, and arrived on the Maryland side. We parked the car and I grabbed a quick hot dog (not having eaten anything yet) and then hikes about for a while. It was beautiful weather. Lots of people were hiking about. The Billy Goat trail was closed, probably due to all of the rain we’ve been getting, but we strolled along the canal, and also followed the pathway that overlooks the falls. I even managed to take a few pictures, which I’ll post later.

Upon getting back to Kelly’s I decided I was read for a nap, and I think I must have napped for around 1-1/2 or so. We ran to the grocery store and then packed up our things (and Kelly packed up her laundry) and we headed over to my place. Kelly did laundry while I mowed the lawn. Well, the front lawn. I completed the front lawn and just started the back when I had a rock with the mower and it stopped working. When I try and start it, it just makes a clicking sound. I don’t know what’s wrong with it.

Saturday evening when headed into DC to hang out with Sarah and Michael. That was fun. We took their dog, Oliver, for a walk in the Congressional Cemetery, stopped at Harris Teeter’s to pick up some food, and then sat out in their backyard, talking, and eating for a few hours. It was close to 11 PM, I think, when we finally headed home.

Sunday

We were up fairly early this morning, but lazed around for a little while before really getting started with our day. It was much warmer today and the temperatures are actually going up into the mid-60s tomorrow and Tuesday!

We headed up to Buddy Attic park early in the afternoon and walked twice around the lake, hand-in-hand, talking the whole way. We stopped at a small playground and tried out just about all of the different things that they had their. That includes Kelly scaling a rock-climbing wall with great aplomb.

The walking worked up our appetites. Afterward, we headed to Chevy’s for a late lunch/early dinner. By the time we got back to the house, it was time for Kelly to head home.

I did a little bit of cleaning this afternoon, changed some light bulbs, ran some laundry, but otherwise, it has been a fairly lazy Sunday.

Back to work tomorrow!

Lakeside reading

I took Mindscan by Robert J. Sawyer up to Buddy Attic Lake in Greenbelt this morning and sat by the lakeside reading for about an hour. It was a little warm, but the air smelled good and was filled with the sounds of birds and bees and dragonflies. It was particularly pleasant whenever a cloud passed over the sun for a few minutes; the air cooled down and a cool breeze picked up.

Here are a few pictures from where I was sitting:

I’m back home now and about to get started writing. I’ve gone through the first 4 sections of “Graveyard Shift”. Part 5 requires a little rewriting and that’s what I’m starting on next.