Monday, March 12, 2007

Beach trip to Gulf of Mexico.................................

Recently we were pleasantly surprised when a cousin Wendell, who I have been corresponding with, offered his condominium on the Gulf of Mexico to us for a week. I have two cousins and their husbands, my husband and myself, who get together about once a month for a meal, either in our homes, or at a restaurant. We make an annual trip somewhere each spring.

One of the couples, Shirley and Ed were unable to go but the other couple, Mary Jo and Bobby were ready to go. Edward, my husband, had an early dentist appointment on Monday morning. We went in separate vehicles because we were attending a meeting further up in Alabama the latter part of the week. We traveled along together communicating by cell phone.

We arrived at Orange Beach, Alabama about sundown and quickly found the highrise, and highrise it was! So much of Orange Beach and Gulf Shores was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. Much has been rebuilt but the rubble of earlier establishments is evident.

Our's is the one on the left.......

It is the ideal location. Corner, ground floor, door opening out to the pool, and just beyond, the most beautiful white sugary-sandy beach imaginable!

Beautiful white beach.........

Mary Jo and Bobby

For our first fresh seafood meal we found 'Bubba's Seafood Restaurant' nearby. The food was delicious and the atmosphere 'beachy'.

Betty and Edward

This particular building had major damage form the hurricane and was under renovation for many months. Newly redecorated, it is beautiful and so chic. The livingroom is painted terracotta red with cream leather sofas, red and cream ticking club chair, pickled-white TV armoirie and wicker tables.

Mary Jo and Bobby

Betty and Edward

The dining room is a lovely mustard-gold color with a large glass top table with two white stone monkeys back to back for a base. Six burgundy, blue, cream striped chairs are very comfortable. A dark metal chandelier lights the area and a full wall of mirrors gives the impression of a much larger area.

We stayed in the master bedroom suite painted khaki color with doors opening out to the patio and pool. A king size bed was very comfortable.

There were two other bedrooms and bath, and kitchen with every convenience. These bedrooms were painted in shades of green and accented with tangerine hue acessories. In one of the bedrooms a humongous sailfish hung on the wall. Someone commented that Wendell probably caught it. Later, curiosity killed the cat, I thumped it and discovered it was metal!

It really does look real............

Since the weather was absolutely perfect, we went to Mobile to Bellingrath Gardens on Tuesday. Actually, it is at Theodore, AL. It is sixty-five acres of beautifully landscaped grounds.

On another posting, I'll show pictures and tell you more.

We came back to Fairhope and spent sometime shopping. How patient our husbands were!

We had so many people to recommend 'Lambert's Cafe' that we chose to eat there. It is famous for 'throwed rolls.' After ordering, servers will come around with many pots and pans of vegetables, apple butter, sorghum syrup, etc. One server pushes a cart with homemade rolls and hollers out, "Homemade rolls, anyone?" If you raise your hand, he will throw you one, sometimes across the room, and I saw only one dropped. If you like down home cooking and a laid back atmosphere then you'll enjoy eating here. If you want a more formal setting, then this woudn't be your cup of tea. One thing, you certainly will not leave hungry!

On Wednesday morning, Mary Jo and I went for an early morning walk on the beach. It was beautiful but breezy. One lady was out feeding cereral to a congregation of seabirds. Some were out fishing, others collecting shells, etc.

Hungry birds...........Wonder which cereal they prefer?

Click to enlarge

This was one of my favorite pictures .........

This didn't leave any doubt about smoking....

We rode along the beach looking at the brightly colored houses, amused at some of the names: Old Folks Home, Ours and Theirs, Sis's, and many others that escapes my mind.. We went to Foly, AL to shop. There are several antique and collectible shops there. At one really interesting shop, the lady clerk, asked where we lived and she has two friends that live in one of the towns near me.

Arriving back at Orange Beach late that afternoon, for our evening meal we ate at 'The Original Oyster Restaurant'. After a wait we were seated at a table next to the water. The food and service was exellent.

We thoroughly enjoyed our meal here..........

Thursday morning, we cleaned the condo and packed anad left about 10:00am. We stopped at a few other shops and I found a beautiful quilt to take to the cabin and two Lochs of Scoltand, Lake Oich plates that I have twelve place settings of, but now that we have fourteen in the family, I needed two more plates.

The vintage white cake stand and blue and white cup-teapot I found a few days later...

We were unaware of the tornadoes in Alabama and later in Georgia. We ate lunch together in Pennsacola, Glorida and while we were there, Mary Jo's daughter, Joy, in TN called and encouraged us to get back on the road. We parted company and headed north into Alabama.
Listening to the radio, we learned of the terrible collapse of the school in Enterprise, AL where eight students were killed. We began to experience very hard rain and wind. We were in the area not too far from the counties affected. We finally had to pull into a rest area and wait until the weather calmed down.

We have friends who live eighteen miles from Enterprise. Our daughter Amy and family, lived near there several years ago.
We finally got to Tallasee, AL about 6:00 that evening and checked into the most marvelous victorian hotel, the Talisi Hotel. It is like stepping back in time, to a much gentler time......

That's a story for another posting............To be continued.


Tracy said...

Betty, what a lovely vacation! I've never been to Alabama, but I have friends that have gone to the beaches there for years. They say that it is wonderful. I'm glad that you made it back home safely through the rough weather.

PEA said...

What an absolutely gorgeous condo and that beach...what I wouldn't do to be walking on it right now!! I so enjoyed looking at all your pictures. That restaurant sounded like a lot of fun too:-) I can imagine, though how scary it was to be travelling and finding out there were tornadoes going on all around you! xox

RoseMary said...

What a wonderful gift that vacation was to you. So glad you didn't get in the worst of the weather--it's always hard to keep up with exactly what is going on when you are traveling. Great finds on your way home, too.

Karen said...

Betty, thank you for taking us with you through your tour of pictures. I love it when pictures are posted. Very pretty scenery that makes me want to head to the beach! LOL I'm glad you enjoyed your trip and made it through everything safely. It's fun to travel with friends and it looks like you had a great time.

dot said...

Betty, I enjoyed this post so much especially since I'm from that area! We ate at Lambert's in January and I believe that same boy was throwing the rolls! He really went out of his way to make our meal nice so I had to give him a tip when we left. I love eating there!
REally nice pictures!

Betty said...

Thank you for responding to my effort to show the posting to Mary Jo and Bobby. The do need to get a computer and join us in the 21st century.....

Thank you for the sweet comments in your email. Drop by for a visit any time, I love company..

Susie said...

Hi Betty,
Loved this post with all your lovely pictures. It's always such fun to have a little getaway and visit new shops and restaurants isn't it!
That storm was such a tragedy, soglad you made it safely home!

Candy said...

I loved seeing those pictures.
VERY nice!!

Christie Belle said...

Oh, so glad you made it back home safely. It looks like you had a wonderful trip. The pictures were beautiful, makes me want to book a room at the beach right now!

Lovella said...

Thank you so much for taking such great pictures of your trip with friends. It was so nice to see the couple pictures, I loved that. So wonderful to have friends who just enjoy the same things. I loved it when you said that your husbands patiently waited for you to shop. That is wonderful.
can't wait for the rest . .

Naturegirl said...

Sigh.. your photos of the beach bring back my memories of my walks along the beach just days ago!What a difference a day makesin so many ways!!
I enjoyed your tour and what a comfy home away from home you had! One of the perks of travelling is experiencing the different restaurants!Oh that hot roll cart..pass the butter please! hugs NG

Tina Leigh said...

I enjoyed all of your pictures Betty. I am familiar with a lot of that area since my Mama is from there & I grew up just a little north of there. I loved Lamberts! You didnt take more pictures of Bellingrath? I loved that place & when spring comes I always think of South Alabama. I dont know of any place prettier than L.A. and the azelas are always so beautiful! Were they in full bloom there? I cant wait to hear about the hotel! It was very sad about Enterprise. I go thru that town when I go to my home town of Grove Hill, Al.

Reflection Through The Seasons said...

Betty, I have enjoyed sharing your vacation and what a lovely selection of pictures you have treated us to. It was good to meet Mary Jo and Bobby and of course to see more pictures of you and Edward, particularly the picture of the two of you in the restaurant, now I know where it was taken.

The beach looks very inviting and it was interesting to see how much lighter the sand is there, here it is more golden.

I’ve heard about Bubba’s seafood restaurant in a previous letter you wrote me. It sounds wonderful, but I would have to give it a miss as I’m not too good with certain seafood.

The apartment you had looks super, how lucky to have it available to you and I was intrigued to read about Lambert’s Cafe, it sounds a lot of fun. That’s a good shot of the guy with the bread roll just about to leave his hand.

It’s good to see the treasurers you found too, I do love the cake stand, there is something that attracts me to cake stands you know! I have a small collection of them. The quilt is beautiful and so two the blue places.

Thank the Lord you were kept safe whilst travelling through that dreadful tornado.

Oh did you take pictures in the Victorian Hotel. I look forward to chapter two of your vacation. Marion