Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Under the Persistent Drizzle

The next day was rainy as well, so we went on another road trip, this time to Rosemary Beach.  It's a little further down the way than Seaside, but worth the drive.  We found it last year while driving to St. George Island: it's the planned European-looking community with all the awesome architecture!

It stopped raining for a bit so we walked out to the boardwalk and perused a few of the shops.  It's very inspiring walking around the little streets and alleyways.  It's clean, but lived-in, and the flora and fauna accentuates the amazing detail of the houses.

We made our way up the main cobblestone street and across 30a to the Parkside, an area that we did not get to explore last year.  Mom and Debby went to the shops while I explored the neighborhood.  Everywhere I looked was something beautiful enough for a picture.

It started sprinkling while I was out and about, but I didn't really think much of it because it was still a little squinty-sunny.  I should have though.  Not five minutes later, it started absolutely pouring.  Luckily, there were many overhangs and covered walkways that I could take cover under, but I still got soaked running from one to the next.  Mom and Debby had made their way back to the car before the downpour started so they were able to come pick me up from where I was.  Another rain day well spent!

(photos by e.hunt)

Monday, August 22, 2016

"In Case I Don't See Ya, Good Afternoon, Good Evening, and Goodnight"

-Jim Carrey, The Truman Show

The next day it rained... all day.  A little disappointing, but we didn't let it ruin our fun.  We all hopped in the car and started driving east along 30a, the scenic beach road that goes through Grayton Beach, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, and other rustic little beach towns.

Our first stop was this lovely little interior decorating shop that Mom found when she was here in the winter for Dad's show.  They had a lot of really nice furniture and pillows, but what really caught my attention was the artwork.  I'm sensing a new chalk pastel project coming up, and I'll definitely use these as inspiration.

The next stop was Grayton Beach.  It wasn't raining at this particular spot along the coast, so we thought it would be perfect to get out and check out the famous beach.  It was a little windy, as you can see in the pictures, but very picturesque.

The next stop was Seaside.  We drove around for a while trying to find a parking spot, then battled the sheets of rain to get to the shops.  Seaside is a very cute little tourist town.  In fact, The Truman Show, with Jim Carrey, was filmed here for its charming, small-town vibe.

The rain started to clear as we were driving home that evening, and made for a pretty spectacular sky outside our balcony.  Debby whipped up a delicious pasta dish for dinner, we each had a couple glasses of wine, and watched a movie before going to bed.  For a rainy day, it turned out to be pretty fun.

(photos by e.hunt)

Friday, August 19, 2016

Salty Eyelashes and the Endless Ocean

The next day was uneventful.  We followed the same schedule as before; coffee on the veranda, sunscreen in the room, and claiming the end umbrella set.  We were both in a more relaxed state and decided to not do a castle that day.

Around mid-afternoon, the sky was starting to get really cloudy with big, dark storm clouds.  We decided to call it a day and go to Destin for a little shopping before picking Debby up at the airport later that evening.

The next day was a stunner.  After coffee and sandwich-making, we headed down to the beach.  It was another lovely day.  The water was a little more choppy, with a slight undercurrent to the left, so it was a bit more of an adventure going into the water.  After a few beachy beverages, and a lot of sun, we were ready to go up and get cleaned up for dinner.

We decided to go out for seafood at one of our old favorites, Pompano Joe's.  It's a big house that sits right on the beach, so we got drinks and headed out to one of the boardwalks while waiting for our table.

The wait was only about thirty or forty minutes, surprisingly.  Usually at those kinds of places it's so packed the wait can be upwards of two hours!  We were lucky and got a table in one of the windows. We each decided on something a little different, and all plates were delicious.  It was a fun night, and always nice to drive on Old 98, the old highway that goes along the beach.  There are a lot of cool old houses and newer resorts, and we even spotted the Tranquility House where the big Hunt family used to stay when we first started coming to Destin way back in 1994.

(photos by e.hunt, and r.hunt)

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

An Artist of the Floating World

The next day was glorious.  We both woke up at a leisurely nine or nine-thirty and had coffee out on the balcony.  We brought the little Keurig and I packed up a big bag of all variety of k-cups.  That day's selection was Sulawesi, a single-origin dark roast that was perfect with a splash of Bailey's.

Then it was beach time!!  We put on our suits, loaded up the cooler and our beach bags, and put on sunscreen before heading down.  Some of the best advice I can give anyone is to put on sunscreen before going down to the beach.  It's so much cleaner and easier that way: you can wash your gross lotion hands and it has a little more time to sink in before the sun hits.

We set up camp at our complimentary beach chair and umbrella set and I spread out the beach toys in front so no one would sit in front of us.  We didn't really have to worry about that though because our building was so small, and probably under-booked during the late-summer season.  It was absolutely lovely.  Sunny, white sand, rolling waves, and not-too-seaweedy water.

After relaxing a bit, I grabbed the shovel and started digging out a mountain for a sandcastle.  It would be a simple, warm-up one, but it was still big enough that I got calluses on my hands from the shovel work.  I'm not used to having to do all the prep work!  After all the digging, packing, and watering steps, we let it sit for a while for a swim and lunch break.  Mom made some delicious turkey, avocado, and mustard sandwiches.

After that, Mom jumped in to help too!  We did some forms, dug a four-way tunnel, and I worked on stairs while she did some carving design work.  Turned out pretty good for Day One, I think.

That night we drove through Destin to one of our old favorites, Mitchell's, for a seafood feast.  Everything was delicious, but I have to say that Mom's sea bass was the winner.  And once we got home, we were both so full and tired that we went straight to bed!

(photos by e.hunt)

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Happiness In Blue

We arrived on Saturday around five or so.  The parking lot was underneath our building so we got our first glimpse of the beach without even getting out of the car!

We then went straight out on the boardwalk to get a better view.  It was windy up there!  The rest of the evening was fairly uneventful; unpacking the car, a light dinner, a trip to the grocery store, and getting settled in the condo.  We were treated to a beautiful lightning storm out over the water too.

(photos by e.hunt)

Sunday, August 14, 2016

This Side of Space

Last Friday was go day, so we woke up fairly early, packed up the car, then went to Kaldi's with Taylor before getting on the road.  Andrew would be getting off work around four or so, so we didn't want to arrive before that.  Turns out we didn't really have to worry, 'cus we ended up hitting a two-hour traffic delay!  We still don't really know what happened, but after getting to the front of the line, the highway was closed off so we had to detour through a tiny farm town.

We got there around five thirty and hung out at the house for a while before heading over to The Pharmacy.  It was one of my favorites when I lived there; Andrew and I would often go there for a beer and a burger.  There was quite a wait so we headed out to the outdoor bar for a drink.

After dinner we played a round of cards and went to bed.  We were all tired and needed to rest up for the next day.  We decided to grab coffee before leaving and Andrew and Juliana wanted to try this new place a few blocks from their house called Dose.

It was an interesting concept, sort of a semi-breakfast, semi-coffeeshop hybrid.  We sat down and ordered our coffees and pastries, but there was also a counter to order and go.  It was nice to sit and order, but it seemed to take a while for our things to arrive.  Turned out to be pretty good though.  After that we got back on the road for the last six to seven hours.  It was a quick stop but fun to catch up with the Nashvillians.

(photos by e.hunt)

Friday, August 12, 2016

Just A Preview

Well, today is our last day here at the beach.  About time I start posting about it, hunh?!  The last two days have been rainy and overcast, but we woke up today to sunshine and cool clouds in the distance so we plan on taking full advantage of the day.  I came back up to the room to have a quick cup of coffee, and thought, maybe I'll do a quick post, too!  I'll start the day-by-day at home, so here are a few pics that capture the week.

The view from our lovely beachfront room.

We were treated to a majestic lightning storm the night we arrived.


Sandcastle #1.

All the seafood.

Rain days.

Which led to trips down 30a to Rosemary and Seaside.

What a fun-looking group, no?!!

(photos by e.hunt)