Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Scenes from Bethel Beach

Last Sunday morning, I went for a six-mile run that began and ended at Bethel Beach.

The weather was just about as perfect as it could be for running.

Although the sun was out, the temperatures were cool. 

There was a slight--but not overpowering--breeze.

Baby Sis and I are signed up for the Outer Banks half-marathon again in November. This year I'm struggling with some issues I will attribute to being Almost 50.  These issues amount to minor aches and pains which bother me the first few miles of a run but which ease up afterwards--only to haunt and taunt me again the next day as I get out of bed.  Aggravations, basically.  Nuisances.

At work recently, someone informed me that issues weren't really issues but opportunities for greatness.

I rather like that switch and will make a concerted effort to train my thoughts in that direction whenever I feel like complaining about my age-related issues aches pains plantar fasciitis probably also arthritis opportunities for greatness.


Monday, September 15, 2014

Catherine's 50th

Once upon a time, a friend named Catherine turned 50 and decided she wanted to take a two-hour cruise from Tappahannock up the Rappahannock River to Ingleside Vineyards  in we still don't know which county we were in the Northern Neck.

So she did.

She invited a group of friends, one of whom bestowed her with this hat which declared not only that she was an "old coot" (on the back) but also over the hill.  Another of her friends called her Edith Bunker, but that's not really what we're focusing on here today, pearls and actual resemblances notwithstanding.

Catherine spent much of the boat ride there and back regaling her friends with stories.  I'm here to tell you right now, if there is one person on this planet who needs her own reality TV show, it's Catherine Miller Owens.  She can spin a tale complete with hand gestures, facial expressions, perfect pauses, and just the right words to keep everyone in stitches.

To tell the truth, Catherine's story-telling motions were so lively they drew the attention of the older passengers sitting inside the boat.  I peered through the window more than a few times and caught a whole row of people spellbound--and they couldn't even hear what she was saying.

It just doesn't matter with Catherine.  She's hilarious.

Catherine, Alda and Christine

Alda and Lawrence

Catherine's husband Willie B. (making sure she didn't flail herself overboard with her hand gestures),
Catherine and Lisa

When we arrived at the winery, the disembarkation process was smooth.
Here Laura Lane, Catherine and Teresa make the trip down the dock.

The birthday girl, who is also a nurse, received what she called a "laceration" on her upper thigh in a recent boating incident. I wish I could say she was showing the crowd her laceration here,
but alas I cannot.  She was just posing for a picture.

Merlot grapes had just been harvested when we arrived at the winery.
Here, Catherine samples a few.

After a very educational talk about how the wine is made, we sampled some of the wines.
Although I'm more of a merlot fan, I liked their Chesapeake Chardonnay
best of all those sampled.

We enjoyed lunch in their lovely courtyard. There's also a very interesting museum on site.

On the boat ride back to Tappahannock, a feather boa suddenly appeared from nowhere.

And glasses.

It was a great day.

Catherine took the time on the cruise over to say what she appreciated most about each of her friends in attendance.  I'd like to say to Catherine that I appreciate her unconditional friendship.

But most of all, I think she has a true gift.  When nothing or nobody else can, she can make me laugh. She is the queen of telling stories and the queen of physical comedy.  When she mentioned going in to the winery how much she wished she could get barefoot in a barrel of grapes and stomp the heck out of them, I realized then and there that she takes after one of the greats:  Lucille Ball.

She's a one-of-a-kind mess, a comedienne extraordinaire--whether she knows it or not--and we love her.

Just as she is.

Happy 50th birthday, Catherine!

The End.