Friday, January 05, 2007

The Last Four Days in PA

I hate when this happens. I had detailed descriptions of the last four days of our vacation and blogger threw it all out. So now I'm going to put the abridged version in print, which is probably better anyway.

Monday, New Year's Day we watched the Rose Parade and then went bowling. We enjoyed escarole and bean soup, know as manaste and beans for dinner. This is wonderful Italian comfort food I only get when I visit my in-laws.

Tuesday I worked in the morning visiting a PA orthodontist that is part of the customer evaluation. My wife and son and I enjoyed lunch and a visit at S&S Grilling in New Holland. S&S is owned by my cousin Jackie, my Uncle Chuck and Jackie's son Scott is the chef. Scott went to culinary school. S&S Grilling started as a traveling outfit winning many awards for pulled pork, brisket and other bbq's meat. They opened the restaurant a little over a year ago. Their tag line is "We're not fancy, we're family". Very good food. Stop in if you ever find yourself in southeastern PA. Tell them Darrell sent you. Dinner Tuesday, was more Italian comfort food - sausage and peppers.

Wednesday we went to the huge Cabela's in Hamburg, PA followed by lunch at the Cracker Barrel Restaurant. I was able to get in a 5.4 mile run into downtown Annville and used the facilities at the Heilman Fitness Center at Lebanon Valley College. Dinner Wednesday was at The Batdorf Restaurant in downtown Annville, a southwestern place owned by the Rotunda brothers of Italian/Mexican heritage.

Thursday I made it over to Cornwall for a 6.8 mile run on the Lebanon Valley Rail Trail, a very nice cinder trail through the woods, yet still within eye or earshot of civilization. Although it was in mid 30's when I ran in the late morning the temps got up into the mid 60's in the afternoon.

Bryan fell in love with PA, much like he did OH this spring. He enjoys the open spaces, fewer people and the darkness and quiet at night. He talked constantly of moving there after high school. I'm not so sure that he just might do it. Although I enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere I'm not sure I share Bryan's desire to be in PA full time. The risks associated with relocation are far greater at my age than at his. We all encouraged him to follow his dream. I know his grandparents would be thrilled to have him nearby. The peace and solitude of the country seems to suit him. For now we are back in CA, a place I initially found very foreign compared to my hometown in OH, but a place I have now grown comfortable in. I hope Bryan can find that place for himself as well.


robtherunner said...

Sounds like a good time.

I felt the same way about Portland when I visited the area with my parents when I was younger and I ended up moving there after graduation. I met my wife in Portland and then we moved back to Washington. It's funny how we are drawn places. Glad to hear you made it back safe.

Backofpack said...

Sounds like a lot of good eating on this trip! Our oldest is talking about moving around too - he wants to wander both the states and Europe. We are encouraging him to go, but it does tug at the heartstrings. I'm glad you had a wonderful trip and even got some runs in on the way!

Juls said...

I sounds like a lot of fun and eating. Your post is an interesting mix of fitness and food. I'm getting fat just reading about all of the food you ate. YUMMY!

Is Brian your son? A Californian boy wanting to move the PA? When Dylan 1st went to Carnegie Mellon in PA he was in shock. It was so much colder than he was used to and "different." But we didn't travel a lot like you when you was young. He adjusted and moved to NY after graduation for a few years. Now he's back in Hollywood.

Joe said...

I can see the relative sparseness of PA to be attractive to Bryan. I grew up in rural Nebraska and visited PA when I was in high school...and was overwhelmed with the "density" of the poplulation!!! We are shaped by our early years, to be sure.

Glad you made it home and fit in a visit to an orthodontist while at it!

Wes said...

Hmmmmm. Giada has a very nice sausage and peppers recipe on Food Network that I just luv. Moving from Mobile to Atlanta was a big adjustment for us. Atlanta is just so huge, and I must admit feeling a bit out of place when I went out to San Fransisco a few years back. I have two siblings that live there now. What is that they say? Home is where the heart is. The heart is happy where it is most comfortable.

Rae said...

Sounds like a great vacay! Isn't it funny how we all like different places? My parents never cared much for the city so as soon as they retired they moved back to the country. I can't imagine EVER living in the country!