Does your body tell you what it needs? Is your liver sending you IMs?
Late Wednesday afternoon, three women, many bubbles (sparkling Rose and Lambrusco) and a parlor games where one asks a life question and all three have to over-share an answer.
Both enlightening and unburdening, we repeat this game the next day.
By evening, we acknowledge how helpful it would be to have a master chart on the porch wall behind us time-lining the men and chronology of our pasts for easy referencing when the conversation gets especially deep.
Two nights in a row, we sup at Ocean Boulevard, the first night at the corner of the bar where both my guests swoon over my meal of braised Dijon,panko-crusted lamb shoulder with the most divine Spring asparagus custard (that's right) under a sprinkling of very crispy frites.
It may just be the best $13 plate of food I've ever had.
Part of the reason we return for a second night is so that the youngster can have this dish all to herself. The manager brings us roll-ups, bragging that he rolled them himself and when I comment about how firm they are, firm enough even to bounce a quarter off of, he grins and jokes, "We're talking about the roll-ups, right?"
While a singer serenades us on the patio with Beatles and Van Morrison, even a little classic Elton John, we spot the man we've dubbed the "Junk Jogger," whom we first saw the night before. Then, we'd thought he'd been pogoing down the Beach Road (and only mildly questioned his intent), only to realize that no, he'd simply strapped a headlight to his lower quarters for a late night jog.
From the patio, we were close enough to see him coming and going, his light still inexplicably affixed to his loins. For all we know, it may be the OBX version of Match.com.
We spent an entire morning watching rain and storms from the screened porch, grabbed lunch at John's - dolphin sandwich, fried shrimp and, oh, yes, milkshakes - and made very few inroads into our books, hardly surprising given the non-stop conversation.
Friday I threw a porch happy hour for five with three plates of meat and charcuterie, including fabulous locally-made beef sticks, and accompanying rumblings from the sky.
Another flashback when we dined canal-side (my second time this week) on the porch, effectively taking over a booth for six and outlasting everyone else, even those who'd arrived after us. I'd say my rib platter outshone all other dishes, but duck potstickers, Maryland crabcakes and crispy tofu with Thai green basil curry all got thumbs up.
Too full for dessert, we nonetheless headed back to the cottage to reconvene on the porch to eat Samoas, sip and watch the moon make its midnight ascent over the ocean, creating an ever-widening swath of moonlight on the becalmed water. whileSaturn and Mars lurked nearby.
The plan for the rest of vacation? According to the blond, it's to "Do things that make us feel like we're 19 again."
As long as I get to act 19 with the wisdom of the porch chart experience, I'm all about some fun.
We're talking about ignoring IMs from the liver, right?