Sunday, March 29, 2009

Life's a Beach!!

Hi all - Dianne here.   We spent three relaxing beach days at the Lighthouse Beach on Sanibel Island with the Gemmers and the three dogs.  Dogs are allowed on this beach if constrained on a leash and, of course, cleaned up after.   All three dogs had a wonderful time.  My two dogs mostly slept, but Jasper did enjoy frolicking in the ocean on the long leash one of the days.  Chaplin kept his reputation as a chick magnet.  Sophie the Puppy was quite a hit, as she is wherever she goes.   She was a good pup and had some nice naps on the beach when she wasn't meeting and greeting all the women and children within a 2-mile radius!    Disclaimer to any PETA members who might read this:   Sophie was not actually drinking beer - just posing!!

Every trip to the beach required a stop at Pinocchio's Ice Cream shop on Sanibel Island on the way home.  Pinocchio's features homemade, Italian-style ice cream in unique flavors.   They are famous for their "Sanibel Crunch" and "Dirty Sand Dollar" flavors.  "Sanibel Crunch" was kind of like butter pecan, except made with vanilla ice cream, coconut, and 

deluxe mixed nuts.  "Dirty Sand Dollar" also had nuts, but also crushed and whole malted milk balls.  The combination was delicious!!   Roger enjoyed "Double Dark Chocolate" which was very dark and chocolate-y.   The two other flavors I enjoyed were "Purple Cow" (Raspberry ice cream with chocolate chips) and "Gator Stew,"  which was colored green with some pistachio ice cream mixed in with the vanilla, lots of nuts, and bits and pieces of Reese Cups.   Two weeks of eating large meals with our friends, ice cream, hors d'oerves and wine did not help my diet plan at all!!   It's going to be back to reality from now on.   But it sure was fun while it lasted!!

As you can see from this photo of our camp site, there was zero privacy and no atmosphere at the Groves RV park, other than FRIENDLY neighbors.  But first, I'll let Roger describe our fun times playing shuffleboard and bocce ball with Chuck & Cindy at the Groves RV park.  (When in Rome, do as the Romans do....)  

Roger here....  I had not played shuffleboard since I was a kid.  I always thought it was kind of fun, but have not had the opportunity to play for many years, and I always thought it carried the stigma as a game for "older" folks.  Since Dianne and I are now in that category (not including Chuck and Cindy who are MUCH younger), we all thought it would be fun to have an afternoon of games (shuffleboard and bocce ball).  The courts were outstanding and extremely well maintained.  

Dianne and I took on Chuck and Cindy in both games.  I am now pleased to report two major upsets in the shuffle/bocce world.  Chuck and Cindy are both athletes.  Cindy coached nearly every women's sport at the high school where she taught.  They raised two sons who are also athletes.  You can imagine our surprise when Dianne and I won the shuffle board game.  Dianne has come into her own and has finally found her sport.

None of us had ever played bocce ball before.  Chuck googled the rules before we checked out the equipment.  What fun!  It is an interesting game that Dianne and I could play again when the opportunity arises.  Chuck and Cindy won the first game.  Amazingly Dianne and I won the second game due to unexpected (and very lucky - no skill involved) four point swing at the end of the game.

These upsets were of the magnitude of a 16 seed beating a 1 seed in the NCAA tournament.  Gotta go Sports Center is calling Dianne for an interview.

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