Monday, May 25, 2009

memorial daze

Being full blooded Americans we took advantage of the first and most major holiday weekend of the summer. Here in Maryland you do that by "going' down da ocean hon" To go down to the ocean one must cross the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. Usually the traffic crush is tremendous so we made an early start for the beach three hours away. The traffic was almost non existent.
Nothing like a four day weekend to recharge the batteries. Well,  actually the battery became an issue this weekend. I might as well spill the beans right away. Turns out Assateague Island State Park only has electric on one loop and it was not the one we selected even though I could swear it said electric on the reservation page.  I hadn't plugged in for a few weeks and my battery was at 10 volts when we pulled into our space. My oldest daughter was curious what the switch over the sink labeled 12 volt did and turned it to on. The switch turns on the air pump that use to pressurize the water system. That pump is very quite and after running for six hours it put a serious hurting on an already weak battery. The trimetric battery monitor was reading 3.9 volts when I discovered the issue. We just made due with the bath house and propane system. Everything was fine and it was fun to rough it a bit. So now that that is over, back to the trip report.
We had some time to kill so we made Crisfield our first stop. This little town has been a boom town in the past, but it has past it's glory. In the day, Crisfield was the main hub for seafood going West and ferries bringing people to the Eastern Shore to go to the beach. The seafood industry is nothing like it use to be and either is Crisfield. Ferries now take tourists and supplies to Smith and Tanger Island in the middle of the Bay. They bring the tourists back and some of the catch to Crisfield. For some reason, we really like this town. We come here a few times each year.
The Watermen also bring their catch directly to the seafood packing houses. Many bring their busters (crabs about to shed their shells) to be put in tanks where once they shed their shells they are my absolute favorite seafood. 
There is nothing that gets my tongue watering like a soft crab sandwich. Yes, you eat the whole thing. It is dipped in an egg wash and then corn meal and fried. The shell is like a potato chip in crispness and the entire inside is succulent crab. I am minding my language on this blog now, but run into me face to face, and I will tell you exactly what I really think about a soft crab sandwiches.
Another thing you find in Crisfield is Smith Island cake. Ten layers of very light cake and butter cream frosting. This one was banana. The Smith Island cake comes in many flavors and are made by the wives of the Waterman out on Smith Island. Those ladies put some love into what they do.
The main reason for the weekend was to get the kids to the beach. Halle jumped right into the building of sand castles. She could not get enough of playing in the sand.
Not  sure how they do it, but kids can just go in that freezing cold water. I am not sure what the temperature was, but there was no way I was going in. I just flew my kite and drank. Hey, What else do you want me to do at the beach?
It was perfect weather and a perfect location. I highly recommend anyone looking for a good place to take the family, head down to Assateuge State Park. Level campsites and clean bath houses. If you need electric and water, make sure your reservation is for "H" loop. 
And while you are there, you can fly your flags for the wind is always blowing strong. Awesome kite flying too. Fishing in the surf or the back bay is excellent also. I am going to try and organize a rally here next year. Not to compete with the WDCU rally at Hatteras, but $40 a night for electric and water is very reasonable.

A big draw for Assateague Island is the ponies. They were survivors of a Spanish Galleon that ran aground back in the 1500's. They are very tame and walk through your campsite at will. They leave lots of gifts, so watch where you step.
We also made a side trip into Ocean City for a stroll on the board walk. Lots to see here. Arcades to play in and amusement rides. I mostly enjoy the people watching. Every shape, size, color, orientation, age, and background you can think of. Nowhere can you gain self esteem like people watching on the Ocean City Board Walk. 

Going home requires going over the Cheasapeake Bay Bridge again. Fortunately, the traffic flowed home very swiftly.


utee94 said...

Anna is looking good, Frank. Soft shell crab sammich = delicioso.


Anonymous said...

DOHHHH....Softshell crab sandwhich...Yummy!!!!