Saturday, June 27, 2009

Vacation Superlatives

Best Museum - According to Victoria and me: The Clark. Who knew a tiny little town in Massachusetts could boast an art institute with an impressive collection of 19th century French Impressionist art. Some people collect stamps, Francine and Sterling Clark collected Monets, Manets, Renoirs, and Degas. The Clark even displays one of our favorite works of art: The Little Dancer Aged Fourteen, a bronze statue by Degas.

According to Kevin: Duh...the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.

According to Alyssa and Hannah: Norman Rockwell Museum. We especially loved it when the guide explained the paintings to us. Shed new light on everything Rockwell did.

Best Baseball Stadium: Tie! Fenway is old; Citi Field is new. Kevin says they can't be compared. The boys attended a game (and got rained out) at Fenway while the girls and I connected with a friend from high school. The whole fam went to a game at the brand spankin' new Citi Field (Mets). It was quite nice, and we were thankful for seats under cover, as it rained.

Biggest Surprise: How many Dunkin Donuts are in the northeast. They are everywhere! I suppose if you can't have Krispy Kreme, you have to replace it with something second rate.
Kevin was just sad that it was so stinkin' cold and therefore was not in the mood for the drink he loves, Dunkin Donut's Iced Coffee.

Best National Park: Acadia Nat'l Park in Bar Harbor Maine. Hannah even likes it more than the Grand Canyon. The Statue of Liberty was great fun...and we saw that before the clouds and rain moved in so our pictures of Lady Liberty are terrific. Minuteman Nat'l Park has a great multi-media presentation, and it was sobering to see the North Bridge, home of the Shot Heard 'Round the World. We just love Nat'l Parks...can you tell?

Biggest Disappointment: the rain. We LOVED Bar Harbor and were so disappointed that it rained the entire time we were there. We drove to the top of Cadillac Mountain twice, only to find the view completely obscured by the clouds.

Favorite Old House: Hildene, but it had no competition. Amazingly it was the only "old house" tour we made. The gardens were breath-taking and the sound of the organ alone was worth the trip to Vermont.

Best Meal: Lobster in Maine...what could top that?

Best Reunion: Both! I plotted and planned to meet Micki, a dear friend from high school who now lives near Boston. It was everything I imagined it would be and more. Despite a slew of e-mails over the past few months, I still found catching up after twenty plus years something akin to drinking from a fire hydrant. The second reunion was with a great friend from college, Angelique. This one was spur of the moment and Angelique was a dear to let the girls and me visit her at her Queens apartment while the boys soaked up the sights and sounds of Citi Field during batting practice. We were captivated by Lily, her adorable, curly-haired two year old and loved seeing a glimpse of her life in NYC. Now, both of these friends need to venture down the coast and visit me!

City with the Best Subway Workers: Boston. The very kind ticket agent helped us get the most bang for our buck. The ticket agent in NYC just acted irritated that such a subway dunce (that would be me) was taking up his time. I AM happy to report we did not get lost or miss a stop in our travels to and from Citi Field and Angelique's apartment, no small miracle for small town girls like us.

If it sounds like we lived in the van...we did! Grand total we logged over 3400 miles in about 75 hours. Except for the rain, we couldn't have had a more fabulous time!

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