Surrey for Rent

Trip Start Jun 03, 2008
Trip End Aug 12, 2008

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Flag of United States  , Virginia
Friday, July 4, 2008

First thing that morning when Rusty awoke he asked when we would be returning to the campsite and if they would get a chance to see Ryan, a 14 year old with a mustache. We hadn't even left yet!   Ryan is the kids'  pied piper du jour and they would be happy if we spent the rest of our lives in the Virginia Beach KOA.  Speaking of the Virginia Beach KOA, there appears to be a large concentration of interesting folks here. First of all, there is a large military presence here, not surprisingly.  They are here for the weekend as well as on temporary assignment for the summer as in the case of Ryan's family (the 14 year old with the mustache).

Every time the kids would return to Monica from an outing, they would cheerfully share tales of people they had met. First there was the Emu or Emo.  For those not in the know, this is a term for a person that their gender is nearly impossible to determine with out a Dr's Physical exam.  They also have heavy Goth overtones in their fashion style and also typically come with plenty of tattoos and hardware. Next, there was a hearing impaired fellow that would convulsively throw himself on the jumping pillow, virtually clearing the area of other children.  Forest "the tapper" would play music with his knuckles creating different tones with various parts of his hands and he never stopped.  He was always tapping.  The girl in the cast had recently been run over by an automobile....Yes, here in the park! Ellen was starting to get nervous as these stories unfolded and said "Clark, I don't know if it is such a good idea for the children to be going out on their own."  "Nonsense, Ellen, Clark replied!  "That's what camping is all about!"

Inquiring as to where we should partake in the Holiday's festivities, we found that our options were MT Trashmore or the beach..."both were good". Curious about the unusual name, MT Trashmore, we were informed that it was indeed a mountain of trash...a landfill.  Believe it or not, it is not a nickname but the legal name for this destination. Speaks volumes, I think.  We picked the beach.       

When we left the RV that morning we walked out into billowing smoke that had covered the sky gray.    We weren't sure if the festivities hadn't already begun here in the park, but we were reassured that it was from forest fires far away, near Portsmouth.  We hopped on the Wave which took us down to the beach area.  Not knowing where we were, what we were planning on doing or anything of the like, we decided to rent a 4 seat Surrey and run it up and down the boardwalk to get a feel for the beach area and determine where all the activity was going to take place.  This bike for 4 was quiet interesting as the pedals were too close for the adults and too far away for the kids which made for some interesting shenanigans. Audrey, of course pulled the Royalty card and thought it was perfectly acceptable for the 3 of us to chauffeur her around.  Clark didn't understand why several folks, (including his wife)  were questioning his driving skills. Clark would purposely drop off the edge right where Ellen was sitting creating more of a 4-wheel experience for her.  Regardless, after an 80 block round trip we returned the surrey in much the same condition as it originally was except for some extra mud on the fenders.   

After the exercise, we opted for a dip in the increasingly chilly Atlantic.  We thought it cold before.  There were millions here but we were fine with that, as it was expected.  The fun for the day seemed to be capturing Jellyfish.  The Griswald children were perplexed, as all the local kids were scooping them up with shovels, shoes, buckets and their bear hands and dropping them into a hand dug hole in the sand.  This was one local tradition we opted out of!

We stopped in to a local spot to get a cool drink and a snack (buffalo tuna bites) when we sat down for a while and realized there mustn't be any table service.  So Clark went to the bar and placed the order with the blond bartender.  After flirting with the 3 men some she called to us that our drinks were ready and Clark happily went to get them.  We drank the beverages down and were still waiting for the snack.  More than 30 minutes had passed as the bar tender was too busy with her tales of the night before and her new conquests.  So Ellen asked her to remove the tuna bites as we were moving on and wanted the bill.  When she gave it to Ellen there was a bloody mary on the ticket, though it sounded good, we did not have one so Ellen said "we did not have a bloody mary."  The blond responded "oh, really" she looked at the ticket and couldn't figure out the math and said "just pay me 21 minus 5".

After a few hours of milling about the typical array of beach shops, and attractions, we landed at Ocean Eddie's, a restaurant out on the pier.  We grabbed a bite, enjoyed the ambiance and watched the population of the beach swell as the sun set.  We found a perfect spot in front of the bandstand on the beach and relaxed as the orchestra played American favorites.  Rusty and Audrey dug in the sand, sculpting and creating as was the young man in front of us.  What was that that he's making? Of course! a life size (if he's lucky!) phallic symbol. Perfect for a  family outing!    

We were then joined by the loud family. The loud family was equipped with mugs and Rusty shared with me that he thought they had beer in them. He was probably right.

Finally, it was dark, the barge was in place and we enjoyed the Independence Day fireworks of 2008 in Virginia Beach, Virginia.   Then the mass Exodus from the beach.  We had no idea that thousands of people had gathered in both direction of the band as we were enjoying the sand art.  It was a true melting pot from all ages 0 to 100 and and races and cultures - a true American celebration.  There were some goings on that did seem a little inappropriate for the kids to witness, but we just walked past.  Ellen however had realized a new status of "ma'am".  In the south, mama was held in the highest of regards and certainly was shown that everywhere she went including walking through the masses that night.  We made it to the trolley and literally squeezed on with the other first 50,000 people leaving the area.  We passed 10 buses before we found one that made room for the 4 of us.  We were glad to have made it out with the 1st 50 and went straight to bed, it was too late to look for Ryan, the 14 year old with a mustache.
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