Saturday, September 17, 2022

Pancakes By The Ocean — INBOUND 2022 Trip: Part 5

With the conference concluded — and the four of us in Rockport, Massachusetts — our Saturday had a much more relaxed vibe. 

We were set to fly out of Boston later in the day, but we had time to enjoy some time in Rockport (and the village of Bearskin Neck...where our AirBNB was located) before we departed. 

Our AirBNB had a number of amenities to offer. 

Jason and Jolene walked on the sand on the “water side” of the structure before the tide came in (which it would later in the morning). 

These chairs (which the tenants staying below us were enjoying when we woke up) would be right in front of the water later in the day: 

There were two decks on the east and west side of the second level. If we had had more time, I am sure we would have sat on the east side deck and enjoyed the mild day:

A part of the AirBNB I didn’t feature in my previous blog post was the kitchen (which was fully stocked with dishes and cookware). 

On the other side of the refrigerator (and blue wall behind the sink) is an eating nook. 

Jason, Bridget, and I were talking about where we thought they could add a second full bathroom on the property, and the eating nook in the kitchen was Jason’s prime candidate. 

The reason we thought that could be sacrificed is that there is a nice dining table off the living room with two long benches (where our luggage is sitting in this picture):

I would imagine that most people eat at the table in the living room anyway, so a bathroom might make good use of the space behind the kitchen (not that we have anything to do with it, but if the owners are thinking about upgrades, they should heed our suggestion 😉). 

But enough about the AirBNB...😉 

We found an amazing breakfast place called the Hula Moon Café. The food was terrific (and the prices were very reasonable). 

Bridget and I ordered the “Blue Moon” breakfast — two eggs, two pancakes, hash browns, and bacon. 

Bridge had her eggs scrambled and her bacon “crispy”: 

I had my eggs fried: 

Jolene had the Two eggs with toast and hash browns” breakfast — she substituted english muffins for toast and added a side of sausage. 

Jason had a veggie omelet with hash browns and an english muffin: 

The pancakes were thick and cooked perfectly. Bridget and I ate for under $25 (including tip), which seemed really good for the amount of food served. 

It was nice to be able to sit along the sidewalk and enjoy a pleasant Saturday morning. 

Much of our breakfast banter was about a “for sale” restaurant behind where we were sitting — formerly the Blacksmith Shop Restaurant — that Jason talked about buying and renovating (it looked like a lot of work to me, but I'd be happy to fly in and visit when it is finished). 😆

After breakfast we decided to walk down to the water — specifically a rocky outcropping that separated Sandy Bay from Rockport Harbor. 

Along the way, we perused more of the shops. Jason and I purchased “Boston” sweatshirts at The Boston Shop, a store specializing in Boston merchandise. 

We walked by this cute little bookstore — Susie’s Stories Bookstore: 

The four of us purchased some small watercolor prints (of animals) in the Lauri & Hilda Kaihlanen Gallery (if you click on the photo, you should be better able to see samples of the artwork they sell):

The lady who sold us the artwork was friendly and informative. She told us that a number of sequences in the Oscar-winning movie “CODA” were filmed in and around Rockport (the rock quarry scene and the scene in the performing arts center). 

I took several pictures along the way, including this picture of small sailboats in Rockport Harbor:

The outcropping (I think that’s what you’d call it) offered great views of the water: 

There is a cement platform at the end next to the inlet. I took this selfie of the four of us standing on it: 

Bridget took this video of the water lapping on the rocks (hoping to catch a significant swell on camera): 


When we returned from the inlet, we walked around town a bit more. You can see in this picture that the tide had come in, and water had reached the stone foundation below our AirBNB: 

This guy was playing guitar and singing the song “Jolene” (a pure coincidence, but the singer thought it was pretty funny that Jolene happened to walk by during his performance): 

I should also note that when we had parked the car in the street the previous evening, we forgot to roll up the window on the Tahoe (fortunately, it didn’t rain, and we had our belongings with us in the AirBNB): 

And...there was a guest book/journal in our AirBNB, so Jolene sat out on the deck that morning and composed the message for our group (she has nice handwriting): 

We needed to head to the airport. But before we left, we drove along the coast trying to find a lighthouse we had seen to the south of Bearskin Neck. 

Sadly, we didn’t find the lighthouse (a road that looked like a good candidate was private, and said there was no lighthouse), but we did find this little pull-off called Old Garden Landing that overlooked Old Garden Beach (a sign said you were supposed to have a local permit to park at Old Garden Landing but we decided to risk it 😉):

A friendly lady was sitting in a chair on the landing. She provided us with a lot of information about beaches and trails we could try (sadly, we didn’t have time to explore any of them). Bridget and I took this selfie at Old Garden Landing: 

Further research shows that the lighthouse we saw from Bearskin Neck is located on Straitsmouth Island (I don’t think the Tahoe would have made it there)... 

With that, we headed out of Rockport toward Boston Logan International Airport. But before we returned the car, we needed to fill the gas tank. 

Bridget found a gas station near Essex on her iPhone that she thought would be fairly close to the highway. It turned out to be a fairly significant drive (about 10 minutes off the highway), and we ran into a bike race along the way. 

Not gonna lie, I was feeling mildly car sick, and wasn’t thrilled about our “over the river and through the woods” detour, but it makes good blog content (and I got a ginger ale at the gas station to settle my stomach): 

All fueled up, we made the rest of the trek to the rental car drop off at the airport, and took a packed shuttle (that felt like it was 350° inside) to the Southwest terminal. 

Going through security at Logan was long and uneventful (and Bridget didn’t lose a shoe like she did in 2019). By the time we made it to the gate, we had just a few minutes before it was time to board our flight:

And because we didn’t feature pictures of Jason nearly enough in this blog series, here is a picture of Jason waiting in boarding group “A” for our flight 😉:

Our connecting flight was in St. Louis this time out, so the first leg of our flight was a bit longer than the trip to Boston had been. I watched “Top Gun: Maverick” on my iPad again (it is such a fun movie):

The layover in St. Louis was pretty short (we reboarded the same plane), and we were happy that we’d had a big breakfast since we hadn’t had time for lunch. We arrived in Omaha around 7 p.m. after a short 45-minute flight. 

Per tradition, we took a selfie by the “Omaha” mural at baggage claim:

That’s pretty much it. Jason and Jolene dropped us off at home, and Bridget and I did several loads of laundry while we watched the Nebraska Cornhusker’s fateful football game against Georgia Southern. 

It was a fun trip, and it was a much needed break. 

The INBOUND 2022 Trip Series: 

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