Summer recap, part I: Extracurricular activities

September 11, 2010

How do you summarize 11 weeks of practically nonstop activity in a couple of blog entries? Well, first you start by writing about the small stuff, namely the stuff you weren’t doing 80 hours a week. And then you only talk about things you have pictures of, mostly. So here goes.

At the Weathervane, we work hard, play harder, and take our fireworks very, very seriously. Having grown up close to Boston, I have pretty high standards for 4th-of-July fireworks, and while these may not be the most precisely choreographed I’ve ever seen, you really can’t beat sitting so close that you get ashes on your nose.

Yes, that’s a cat on a leash. When I decided to take Avocado with me, I didn’t want to keep her shut up in a smallish shared bedroom in a communal house all summer long, so I got her a harness and leash so she could go out once in a while. She’s not crazy about wearing them, but as soon as she gets outside, she forgets about it and runs around happily chewing on plants, to the amusement of all. And the derision of some. But those people just don’t understand.

This butterfly kept us company while five of us played mini golf on one of our Sundays off. The major activity of that day, though, was lunch at the Woodstock Inn Brewery, where we tagged along on the daily brewery tour before sampling several of the offerings. I’d already tried all the options while visiting with my family the previous weekend; I liked everything I tasted but was particularly floored by the Old Man Oatmeal Stout, which boasted a strong, smooth coffee flavor with a slight sweetness. They don’t bottle the stout – you can only enjoy it on site – but they do bottle my second favorite, the Red Rack Ale. It’s even sold in a couple of stores in Massachusetts, including one in Quincy and one in my hometown, so I’ll know where to look next time I need a taste of the North Country. (Ha. They should totally pay me to write ad copy.)

On the way home we stopped for coffee at the Cascade Coffeehouse in North Woodstock, a cozy, rustic place that sells flavored coffees, sandwiches, ice cream, and used cookbooks. Yes. If I lived in northern New Hampshire, you would probably find me there all the time, sipping something cold and hunting through the shelves (well, there or Miller’s or the Maia Papaya. It’s good to have options).

I have learned that sometimes when I take pictures with my phone, the colors come out unnaturally bright or oversaturated. I think this happens when there isn’t enough light or I’m too close to the subject, and usually it kind of ruins the picture, but in this case I really like the results. I found these amorous-looking trees while hiking a bit of the Appalachian Trail (I was a little confused by the trail markings, but I think this section was called Liberty Springs). It was a hot day and the trail was pretty steep and rocky, and since a) I was hiking alone and b) I had no idea if I was anywhere close to a summit, I didn’t stay out for more than an hour or so. I did have the pleasure of passing by a group of kids with a couple of women as I was heading off the trail. I noticed the kids were mostly wearing flip-flops, and one of the women asked me if the trail went uphill much. I assured her that it did, and maybe I should have also pointed out that the flip-flops were a really bad idea, but I imagine they figured that out pretty quickly.

I went on to climb two actual mountains later in the summer, Mt. Pemigewasset and Mt. Sugarloaf. Both times I was accompanied by a friend from the theater, which meant I was a little embarrassed about being out of shape and needing to stop and breathe often, but he was very patient, and it was nice to have someone to relax with at the top. And getting caught in the rain halfway up Sugarloaf would’ve been a lot more unpleasant alone.  Also, I’m pretty awful at self-portraits, so it’s exciting to finally have pictures of myself on a mountain.

More to come…



  1. They totally should pay you to write copy.

    • Also, standing invite for coffee in our kitchen, should the appropriate circumstances ever arise.

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