I flew to Florida last weekend to spend some time with my parents and their two dogs. My brother was attending an out-of-town wedding, so we were watching his two pugs for him as well. So it was the three of us and a menagerie of rescue pups - Madison, Dobby, Cooper and Andy.
What a cast of characters.
It was an incredibly short trip (only two full days) but we managed to cram a lot of stuff into our time together.
On Friday we took the boat out on the Gulf and enjoyed the warm-but-not-too-hot weather. The water was blue and clear, and we saw quite a few dolphins.
We anchored the boat on a little beach and spent the afternoon kicking back. We turned on our portable radio, ate Publix subs (!!!) and then went searching for shark's teeth and shells in the sand. (Note to self: wear flip flops to avoid sandspurs in feet when foraging unknown beaches.)
Back at the house, we barbequed a rack of ribs and caught up on all the episodes of Resurrection.
On Saturday, my mom and I were busy planning our upcoming trip to New York. In the evening, we all went to Cracker Barrel, where I devoured the most ridiculously indulgent meal: fried chicken, mashed potatoes with sawmill gravy, macaroni & cheese and biscuits with blackberry jam. Then the three of us shared a fried apple dumpling with vanilla ice cream for dessert.
I felt physically ill by the time we left but, damn, that's some good eats.
And to anyone who heard about my American cheese debacle right after I moved to Canada, let this serve as proof that it is very much a REAL food, good enough to be featured on a menu right under country fried shrimp and chicken 'n' dumplins:
I also managed to squeeze in a Checker's run (spicy chicken & seasoned fries all day) and hit up Publix and Walmart for some Zinger's, Fig Newtons, Bigelow tea and other amazing foods that cannot be found in Canada.
I bought so much food that I couldn't fit it all in my carry-on. But fear not - although I had to leave some at my parents' house, my mom is bringing it with her when she visits me in May. (That's why they call us Ameri-can, not Ameri-can't!)
So all-in-all it was a great mini-break for me. It's too bad it didn't last longer, but regardless, it was so nice to see my family, enjoy an economy-sized strawberry soda and know that home is just a plane ride away.