We spent the past week soaking up the sun at Ocean Isle Beach, NC, scouring sandbars for seashells, eating like scales don’t exist, and generally taking a break from the Real World for a while.
It was fantastic.
We haven’t taken a proper vacation in nearly two years, so when Matt suggested that we finally go somewhere earlier this year, I jumped at the chance and we booked that night. He really wanted to go back to Ocean Isle, NC – a place where he used to go with his sister and dad when he was a kid – for a week of forced relaxation. I say forced because we are such go getters and multi taskers, we needed a place with little or no options so we could fully unwind. Plus, I’ll confess, the idea of a week back on land with all of the amenities of a house was extremely appealing.
We were so excited that Matt convinced me to leave Friday night instead of early Saturday morning to get a jump start on the 8 hour drive and to beat traffic. After his cruising trip, he had the overnight shift down to a science and figured out a schedule so one of us could drive for a few hours while the other slept. Guess who ended up driving 5.5 of the 8 hours? Thanks, babe.
We arrived at 8am, obviously too early to check in. Shocker. So we grabbed some breakfast and hit the beach to get the week started. This place was perfect… a nice flat beach that stretched for miles, great side streets to ride bicycles, and that quiet sleepy beach town feel that’s getting harder to come by these days.
The first half of the week was gorgeous and sunny with a strong breeze coming off the water – perfect beach days. The last few were overcast and rainy, but were a different kind of perfect… the kind that provided an excuse to lay on the couch and watch TV, an activity that we haven’t done for nearly 2 months since the boat has neither a couch nor a TV. I felt guilty at first however, as the 4th episode of Castle came on and AMC ran previews for a Godfather marathon the next day, I finally let myself relax and enjoy just how awesome it felt to just veg out again.
We were also enjoying playing house again – literally in a house – and indulging in all of the things we traded when we decided to move onto the boat. Like what, you ask? A kitchen. Counter tops, actually. This place had a good ten feet of them compared to about two in the boat. The aforementioned TV and couch. Again, two staples in a house that aren’t on the boat. An attached bathroom. No more running to the marina bath house with your toiletry kit, shower shoes and towel to shower. It was hard to leave these things again at the end of the week. We asked ourselves quite a few times that week if we had made the right decision to pursue this adventure. We were crazy, to give all of this up, right? What had we gotten ourselves into?
Then we got home and walked down thru the marina. The weather was gorgeous, the water was calm, and we saw our boat – our home – waiting patently for us at the end of the dock. It sounds silly, but it seriously felt like we were still on vacation. And the best part is, that we feel like that mostly every day. We hadn’t found our adventure, it had found us.
But wait… before you think we stood there all dreamy eyed, marveling over how awesome our lives are, let me tell you what happened next. As we walked into the boat, we noticed that it was abnormally hot and there was a slight odor we just couldn’t figure out. Our AC pump went up and somehow blew the fuse to our fridge and freezer while it was at it. Oh yes. Trust me, the irony of the situation was not lost on us.
Thankfully we had used most of what was in the fridge except for a few condiments and a small block of goat cheese, which was the source of the odor. Unfortunately, the freezer was stocked with veggies and meats, which had been reduced to a warm soupy mess. It really wasn’t that much, and with some Clorox and a trash bag, order was quickly restored. Luckily, we were able to get both working again right away. As for the AC pump? We had to order a new one today to be overnighted so Matt can install it tomorrow before the weather skyrockets back into the 90’s.
Ah, boat life. You can’t appreciate the highs without the lows.