Tag Archives: veterans

Love was in the air.

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A rather tardy Valentines Day post.

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A bouquet of flowers was delivered that morning….

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And while I don’t think it was our local florist’s best work, the sentiment remained steadfast.

Early afternoon found us out in the barn and back at the Scrabble board.

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Although the way it started reminded me a little too much of Bill and Monica.

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Did I win?

Such a silly question.

Unbeknownst to my husband, I’d made early evening reservations at one of his favorite restaurants and before the place got too crowded, we slipped in for a glorious meal.

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Long stemmed red roses were given to ladies upon entry… and petals were scattered everywhere. On the floor, on the window sills, on the chairs…..

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Even under the beer taps.

We settled happily at the bar (the husband’s preferred spot because one of the bartenders was a Marine which can lead to hours long conversations) and I tucked into a few delightful Rum Punches. We had appetizers that I forgot to photograph… garlic Parmesan wings for the husband, creamy clam chowder for me… and were awaiting our meals when this older couple sat down across from us.

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In case you can’t see it, the man was wearing a Marine Corps tee shirt. It was at that moment I knew I was doomed.

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Like recognizes like… and within minutes the gentleman uttered the words I never want to hear on Valentines Day.

Semper Fi.

My husband bought them a round of drinks. They bought us a round of drinks. Military stories were traded across the bar….and by the time our lovely meals arrived?

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Filet Oscar with fresh lobster, roasted fingerling potatoes and grilled asparagus for the husband.

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Filet au Poivre with cremini mushroom brandied cream sauce, roasted fingerling potatoes and grilled asparagus for me…

I’d lost him.

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And ended up eating most of my meal alone.

So when I said love was in the air?

Apparently I was talking about the Corps.

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Random things and thoughts.

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What passes for news in my town?

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Oh no! The poor girl. Being roosterless is a terrible thing.

Or so I’ve heard…

A while back I made a Facebook Veterans Day post with some photos of the hubby in uniform. I found these after the fact.

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In Beirut, Lebanon October 1983 with the bombed out Marine barracks in the background.

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He took 12 bodies out of that building.

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A horrible day.

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This one was in Newport, Rhode Island (not sure of the year)  He was receiving a commendation for saving a man’s life.

That’s my husband. And yes, I’m proud.

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A frosty sunrise photo down by the river.

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Okay, maybe you didn’t used to drink in the woods…. but I was a teenager who grew up on an Island in Maine. We drank everywhere.

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And finally, an update.

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Yay.

I love a happy ending.

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Strolling Colonial Williamsburg…. The Liberty Lounge and peacocks.

 

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I’m not sure you could find a more charming place to spend the day than Colonial Williamsburg.

 

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History aside….

 

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It’s just a perfectly lovely town.

 

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Did you know the pineapple is a symbol of hospitality?

Learn why here.

 

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Live Oak trees dominate the landscape, spreading their limbs for decades on end….

 

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And I was seriously enjoying the all natural Christmas decorations.

 

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How clever is that?

And while I was wreath gazing….

 

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The husband spotted the entrance to a lounge reserved for veterans and their families.

 

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To be honest I dreaded going inside.  My husband has the gift of gab every day of the year, but when surrounded by other servicemen and women? I’ve spent half my married life waiting for him to conclude conversations.

 

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But there was free tea, coffee and hot cider…..

 

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And thankfully,  a veteran free room.

 

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Of course he spotted the challenge coin cases which started a 45 minute long convo with the staff of volunteers….. but he added a coin of his own, which admittedly was rather nice.

 

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An hour later? More decorations…

 

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More wreaths…

 

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Some cleverly trimmed shrubbery ….

 

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And the silversmith’s shop…

 

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We oohed and aahed and chatted with the man who ran it.

 

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Did you know the phrase “put your money to work” dates from colonial times before the advent of paper currency? You were normally paid in silver, and instead of having bags of the stuff laying around your home…. you took it to the local silversmith who melted it down and made you a fabulous coffee urn or tea set. Your money was “put to work” and you got to flaunt your wealth to visitors. A win, win situation.

 

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Many of his beautiful pieces were for sale in the shop next door…. but the husband wasn’t thrilled with the idea of me spending his hard earned silver to bring some home.

 

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So we strolled.

 

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And were amazed to learn some of these nice little homes were still privately owned.

Who in the world would want to live in the middle of a tourist attraction?

 

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But more importantly…

Where do I find a peacock for next year’s Christmas wreath?

 

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Cape Cod Day 4….Martha’s Vineyard

 

The forecast for Veteran’s Day was warm and bright so we decided to book passage on the Steamship Authority’s car ferry over to the Vineyard. This is something I’ve always wanted to do and I was tickled pink. Having no idea where, how much, or when…. we dropped by the ticketing office the night before and were rewarded with these –

 

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Free tickets for the husband.

How sweet was that?

 

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We reserved a spot on the 9:30am ferry from Woods Hole and were told to arrive half an hour before departure. Ever the type A personality, I made sure we were there 45 minutes prior and as soon as we pulled up, they pointed us towards the 8:15 freight trip and boom!

We were on board.

 

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With a giant load of Christmas trees.

 

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Being used to small Maine island ferries, I was amazed at how large these ships were.

 

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And how clean, and how spacious, and what great views they afforded.

 

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We happily roamed around taking pictures…

 

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And found a snack bar!

 

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Okay…. it wasn’t open off season, but still. If you want a snack on a Maine ferry? You better dig in your purse for that crushed pack of Nabs from 2003.

And then, before we knew it….

 

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We were there.

 

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Approaching Vineyard Haven.

 

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And yes, it was just as beautiful and quintessentially coastal New England as you would imagine.

 

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Here’s another ferry getting ready to depart, so you can see how large they are.

 

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We had booked an 8:30pm trip back, so we arrived ready to spend the whole day exploring.

 

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Of course none of the tourist information kiosks were open this time of year and we had no utter clue where we were going. ( I didn’t find this map until we were ready to leave.)

So we just drove.

 

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Past weather beaten waterfront homes…

 

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And homes…

 

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That had their own private lighthouses.

 

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How cool is that?

 

What a deal!

 

As many of you know, we have a timeshare.

And no, I don’t want to sell it it you.

 

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But timeshares aren’t what they used to be, and we aren’t stuck with just one week in Boca for the rest of our lives.

 

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We travel when we want, where we want, for as long as we want and we’re loving it. When we no longer love it, we’ll give it to someone else so they can love it too.

 

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Last year when we were vacationing in the Berkshires, we ran into a veteran and his wife at our resort in the mountains. Naturally, the men spotted each other’s Marine Corps hats and began an hour long conversation detailing where they were stationed and when. Fascinating as that was, I struck up a conversation with the wife and asked how she liked the condo. She said she loved it and you couldn’t beat the deals they get with AFVC.  ( Armed Forces Vacation Club )  7 nights in a 1 bedroom unit for $349.  (Turns out I could beat it with our timeshare last call program, 7 nights in a bigger 2 bedroom, 2 bath unit for $299… but I kept that to myself.)

But the idea intrigued me, so when we got home I joined. For free.

It’s open to:

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Not usually…
But this time, yes.
AFVC constantly sends me emails with promotions and so called deals.
Like this recent one:
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Am I reading this correctly?
I’ll pay $349 for the normal 7 night stay….
But only stay 2 or 3 nights?
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In what universe is that considered a deal?
Get half as much, but pay the same price.
I may not be the brightest bulb in the pack, but even I’ll pass on that one.