Asbury Park Oyster Fest 2013..

When is an “Oyster Fest” not an “Oyster Fest”? Maybe when the event is held in Asbury Park.  In two weeks the Red Bank “Guinness and Oyster  Festival” will be held in Red Bank. Then, I will have another “oyster fest” to compare this one to.  I am not complaining. It may sound like I am getting ready to rant about the Asbury Park Oyster Fest 2013, but I am not. Tonight’s blog is a “review” of the festival. I spent over twenty years in the seafood industry and have worked a few of these festivals. I am no expert. I am a consumer with an opinion. And we all know about opinions. They are like, ummm (your butt), everyone has one, nobody wants to hear it..

Parking was a challenge for those attending the festival. I guess that is good for the city of Asbury Park. We drove around for 15 minutes until we found someone leaving a metered spot. Parking was three dollars for three hours. No big deal.  Entrance to the festival was three dollars (a  theme?). The entrance fee benefited the Boys and Girls Club of Asbury Park. A good cause, just a fee.  We (my DW and I) entered the festival around 5 pm on Saturday. I had my trusty camera to record the event. The first order of business was to find the beer truck. We had walked past about a dozen food trucks (some I would guess made famous by food tv) and had not found the beer truck. We saw a women with a beer and I asked her where the beer truck (s) were.  She was kind enough to point out that they (three) were in the complete opposite end of the festival.

We changed directions and walked towards the beer trucks looking at the various vendors and planning our eating adventure (post-beer truck).  As we stood in line we met the person with the best job at the festival.  As you waited in line, someone (a man) would come up to you and check your id. He had the discretion of looking at you and deciding, or asking to see your id. These guys enjoyed their jobs. I would guess they (at each of the three beer trucks) were single and working on meeting women. Me, they had no interest in my id. My DW and every other women in line, they got to show some id or the id checker spent a minute or two talking them up. I could do that job!

After we go our beer (wine for my DW) we continued our search for oysters (Asbury Park Oyster Fest, remember?). We found two vendors shucking clams and oysters. One had a huge line of people waiting. The other had a manageable line of people waiting.  In my mind an oyster fest would include more than two vendors selling shucked oysters. There was no choice of the type of oyster.  How many and how much were the choices. We got a dozen clams and a dozen oysters and found a spot to set our plates down and enjoy our feast. They were nice and cold and really good.

We also sampled a serving of Lobster Mac and Cheese. I will make this at home one Sunday for dinner.  What we got was good but, our portion was the last in the pan and may have been a little light and dried out. It was good. But for a ten-dollar snack, ouch, it was pricey.  And, here was another festival where they really did not have an ice cream vendor. There was a frozen gelato vendor, that was it. After we were done eating we went up to the boardwalk and found an ice cream place there. We sat on a bench on the boardwalk for almost an hour Saturday night watching the waves and the people walking the boards.

We saw a wedding on the beach as we were walking the boards. My DW and I have rarely been to Asbury Park. We live about an hour south so the trip up and back needs to have a reason.  We enjoyed our visit and will be back again as tourists.

Pictures, well of course!  Here is a link to entire folder via Drop Box.

Namaste

 

 

New Pope and a trip to the beach..

Today the Catholic Church got a new pope. I’m sure you saw the news everywhere,  I certainly did. I will admit to watching the announcement being broadcast live on the internet. I wonder if that was a first.  I don’t remember the same excitement (?) with the choosing of the previous pope.  I did not get the job, that is the bottom line. I guess I’m not old enough to be pope. That is what I will keep telling myself.

I have been absent from the blogging world as of late (as you may have noticed).  April’s challenge will be to post something relevant, every day for the entire month.  This month, I’m just not there yet. I do have a short story to share, I have some minor editing to do then it will get whelped and sent out into the world. Chris, interested in some light english language editing? Not content (hopefully), just grammar?  Let me know.   This one feels special to me.

Today I went to the beach in Belmar, NJ to eat my lunch and take some pictures.  I have included some below and this link will take you to the Drop Box folder with all 55 pictures.  The beach in Belmar was hit pretty hard by Sandy.

Yoga last night was good!

Enjoy the pictures and smile everyday! 

Namaste

 

Sandy update and a litte sunshine..

A quick shout out to the two readers from Italy yesterday! Wahoo to you. Also thanks for reading.

The big bad winter forecast for the northeast has so far missed stopping by in New Jersey.  Go figure. I was seriously thinking about buying a snow blower based on the forecast. I will grant you that we are only halfway through the month of January, but it was in the mid 50’s today. I walked my mile plus tonight and had worked up a sweat by the end.  I was walking fast and I had a light jacket on, but still.  I like the warmer weather, it helps with the heating bills.

Wednesday night my DW just got back from getting her hair done for vacation. She looks marvelous! I need to find my hair cut person for Friday.  Sunday we fly to Florida for some sun and some lacrosse. I will hopefully be meeting up with one of the people I met on Twitter.  She and her husband life just outside of Key West. She posts a picture of the sunrise in Key West every morning. I am almost never awake for the sunrise. If you are on Twitter and want to see a Key West sunrise every morning, search for @barbiedoll0087 on Twitter.

I went down to the Windmill with my coupon today for lunch. The Windmill has great hot dogs and coupon specials by the month via email and in the Wednesday newspaper. My favorite coupon is the buy one, get one free coupon. Today’s coupon was a hot dog and a soda for 5 dollars. I also got a bowl of split pea soup. The soup was good, just not as good as the soup my MIL makes. I took my food to go and drove down to the beach in Belmar.  Belmar was pretty hard hit by Sandy. The entire boardwalk was destroyed. The governor was supposed to be in Belmar today for the ground breaking on the new boardwalk. I missed him. His schedule and mine just did not work out. His loss.

Pictures will have captions.  Hopefully the captions make sense.  The two-week post Sandy pictures can be found here via Drop Box. The current, 9 week  post-Sandy pictures can be found here via Drop Box. Here are the pre-Sandy pictures, also via Drop Box. It’s crazy that I was down on the boardwalk shooting pictures a week before the hurricane.

Enjoy!

Namaste

 

What storm?..

 When I left work this evening the sky to the north looked ominous. It has been 90 to 100 degrees and humid for the last three days.  The skies lighted as I drove south. We never had any thunder or rain this evening. Maybe later tonight will be our turn. One of the two customers that have my personal cell phone number called after dinner in a panic since his credit card software was not working. I needed information from the office so I got connected to my computer at work. Almost immediately I was disconnected and could not get reconnected.

I brought up the regional radar and there was a huge red and purple blob over my office. I tried several other machines at work and eventually they all dropped off when their battery backups failed.  Tomorrow should be a joy as people get to work and find out that nothing is working. Me, I have a 7:30 am appointment with a customer working from the kitchen table. I may work from home after that. 

Tonight DS3’s car came home from the shop. The mechanic said that their was no damage to the suspension and such of his car. The car did need tires, we knew that when we bought it. We put four new tires on the car. They also put a few screws into the plastic part of the bumper so that it would not hang down. Our next project (DS3 and I) is to figure out if we can replace the plastic bumper cover.  It would appear from doing web research that the part is available for 50 dollars new and the old one should un-bolt and the new one should bolt back on. I hope the damage is just cosmetic.

It seems that DS3 (according to Facebook) is back in a relationship. It’s tough to keep track.  Back on Sunday when we had not heard her name for a few days we asked and were told that it was over. I guess not.  DS1 worked today. He spent a few minutes after he came home telling me stories about work. That was kind of neat. DS2 worked the evening shift. He came home a few minutes ago. He is battling with his employer to get more hours. They want to keep everyone under 30 hours. It’s tough to pay bills and set money aside during the summer when you work less than 30 hours a week.  DS3 was off today. He hung out with one of his high school ROTC friends.

I ate lunch in Belmar at the boardwalk. It was nice to breathe the salt air and eat my sandwich. It really was not very cool at the beach. Maybe next to the water it was cooler, but back on the boardwalk it was as warm as back at the office (10 miles away). My DW worked a full day. She went to yoga tonight while I worked tech support. I was going to go with her. I need centering..

My pictures tonight come from my visit to the boardwalk. Enjoy!

Namaste

Sunny 137 Saturday post ’em..

Here is an example of a photo gallery. These are all pictures that I shot today with my phone. Click on any picture to start the slide show.

Well, I hope you enjoyed that. I got an email from Word Press during the week and one of the things they were teaching was making picture galleries.

The story behind the pictures. The first three are of the undercarriage of our van. As you may have read back on Sunday night (Post 131) that while driving out of Scranton on Rt 307 we drove over a deer that had just been hit in the left lane. The car has stunk all week. We took the car to the car wash and got the undercarriage cleaning. I guess they don’t clean the undercarriage very well.  After we returned from our chores, I got a flash light and stuck my head under the car to take a look. Yuck and yuck. I could not resist taking pictures.

The rest of the pictures are from a trip to Seaside Park and the boardwalk. This is the area where the Jersey Shore is filmed when they are in New Jersey. We did not see any of them today, not that I would know what they looked like. The real reason to drive to Seaside was for lunch. We wanted to eat at the Berkeley Fish Market. Their website is down. Well, the restaurant is closed (for the season?) and the sign said the bar was open, but the doors were locked. Next store is Bum Rogers Tavern and Crab House. We had a great lunch. My DW had mussels in a marinara sauce. We shared the fried calamari and I had the gumbo. It turns out from talking to the bartender – waiter, that the gumbo and the garlic crabs are their signature dishes. I really enjoyed the gumbo. It was exactly what I was looking for today for lunch.  Do you want to get in and out, probably not where you would go. The food was good and they are open in the off-season.

We did have a nice stroll on the boardwalk after eating lunch. People were all bundled up against the cold. It really was not that bad. The temperatures were in the upper 50’s. It was breezy, but with the wind coming from the bay side towards the ocean, walking in the lee of the boardwalk shops provided shelter from the wind. Heck, I had shorts on, how cold could it been? Those that know we will understand the joke. When I worked in the wholesale fish market in Philadelphia, I would wear shorts all year round. The office I worked in was 70 plus degrees and the customer service/access windows would allow in the 30 degree winter cold. So I wore a jacket to keep the top half warm and shorts so that the bottom half was comfortable. And yes, they thought I was nuts.

Children, so far, pretty quiet. I pushed them to get outside and see the sunshine. DS2 told us that today was an Open House day. He says that the food on Open House days are always the best. He was not disappointed. He also had a trumpet lesson at 3 pm and some Music Therapy paperwork to take care of today.  DS1 and Ds3 seemed to enjoy the pictures. I imagine that the cringe and roll their eyes after getting three or four pictures in a couple of hours from me.

I’m done early tonight blogging. I put some logs in the chiminea and we will be doing the hot tub hop tonight.

Namaste