We went to Baltimore Saturday morning and came back Tuesday. I meant to write something last night but was too worn out from driving and three days with little girls!
While we were there we went to Fort McKinley, where the Star Spangled Banner was written by Francis Scott Keys after one of the battles of the War of 1812. I'm not a big fan of visiting historic places, but Fort McKinley was really great. A video about the battle in the visitor's center was great and ended with everyone singing the SSB. And the Fort is pristine and well restored. The girls' favorite spot was a barracks because there was an old fashioned broom there. They took turns sweeping, over and over. Anytime there was a lull they'd run back there to sweep! (If only they got that focused about picking up toys and clothes....)
It was there that I witnessed an example of what I call: It's A Wonder Our Children Don't Kill Us the First Chance They Get.
A man wanted to take his toddler's picture. The little boy, for whatever reason (probably just because he was sick of having his picture taken!) wanted no part of it and kept walking away until he came to a wall--his father pleading for him to turn around all the way. The boy put his head down on the wall, hoping that would put an end to the whole picture taking thing. Then his father said, "Look, candy!" The boy turned around for candy and got his picture taken instead. Immediately, he burst into tears....
We went to a sea food restaurant with Cathy's parents and had a crab fest. There was wrapping paper on the tables and the waitress just dumped the crabs out. We used to eat crabs a lot when the kids were little and we'd go to North Carolina for three weeks every summer. I caught most of them--a nasty bit of work involving a piece of twine, a rotten chicken back, a sinker and a net. Crabbing was guaranteed to give you sunburn, fly bites and ankles bitten by shrimp. But I loved it.
But it's been years since I'd eaten crabs and, though it's sort of like riding a bike, the process comes back to you, my hands were a lot younger back then. Tearing the crabs apart started giving me cramps in my hands after a while. Tegan and Morgan ate as much as anyone would pick for them but Emma wanted no part of it! Between us, we ate 18 medium and a dozen large crabs. Messy business but oh, so good....
On the way back, we started listening to 880 AM to see how the traffic was. When we got on the Jersey Turnpike we were told there was at least a 2 hour delay on the GW Bridge. By the time we got there it was more like 10 minutes and I thanked the Baby Jesus that I didn't go through the Holland Tunnel like I thought about doing. All my travel in New York is by subway so I wasn't even sure where the Holland Tunnel came out but thought I could find the West Side Highway.
I went to pick up the Puli at the Kennel and he was much better in the car than usual. For one think I had on the classical music station and I think that suited him better than NPR talk...the half a baggie of treats I fed him bit by bit when he didn't bark may have contributed as well!
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