To finish up our week of 2012 favorites, Michael and I thought there’d be no better way than to recap some of our favorite memories from last year’s trips.
1. I think that it’s only fitting to start where Map & Menu started. We were driving through the Berkshires on our way back from the Porches Inn, following a snow storm that had left the mountains, hills, and valleys coated in a layer of snow. On this one stretch of the highway, where you follow the river along a valley with mountains towering over you on either side, I remember thinking how awesome the green and white of the pine trees looked, and how cool it’d be to remember and share moments like this.
2. It’d be crazy to downplay how awesome our time in Provence was. One particular Rosé, Provencal Tomato, and Fromage lunch at Hotel Crillon le Brave, overlooking the mountain, relaxing with someone who means so much to me, sticks out in my mind as one of those rare memories that will stick with you forever.
3. Orvis, Orvis, Orvis. Any and every time we get to share a trip or do an activity with our best friend is a special time. I love the way he stares out of the corner window, down onto the main street of Milford at Hotel Fauchere, or when he’s rolling on the lawn in front of the Chesapeake at the Inn at Perry Cabin. Watching him swim and play at Buttermilk Falls in Ludlow has to be one of the happiest times I’ve ever seen him.
4. The food. We’ve eaten at so many amazing places in the last year and tasted so many delicious and new things, that it’d be impossible to narrow it down to just a single memory. Instead, it’s easier to think about how far our tastes have come and how much further they have yet to go.
1. The night we were staying at the Chebeague Island Inn we witnessed one of the most spectacular, awe-inspiring sunsets we’ve ever seen. After dinner we pedaled our bikes down to the waterfront to experience it from the ferry dock, and then we raced back up the hill so we could also catch it stretched out in chairs on the inn’s wraparound porch. The combination of colors was breathtaking, as it stretched across the water, and there was just something extraordinary about experiencing that moment on an island.
2. The moment we sat down to lunch at Le Jardin du Quai, in Provence, was the first time I felt truly relaxed while we were in France. Our time in Paris was amazing, but a lot of our downtime was spent worrying about our delayed suitcase. Shortly after our bag arrived we had to leave the city for the wedding I was shooting outside of Lyon, and I’m never completely at ease before a wedding, especially one in a foreign country. Once the suitcase dilemma and the wedding were both behind us, I felt like we were finally on vacation. I’m sure it’s no coincidence that this moment of relaxation hit me while drinking a glass of rosé in a Provençal stone garden, while enjoying the best lunch… it was the amazing!
3. We laugh a lot when we travel with Orvis, but I remember giggling non-stop the first day we took him swimming at Buttermilk Falls in Ludlow, Vermont. In fact, we had so much fun with him the first morning of our trip that we decided to take him back the following morning.
4. A leisurely bike ride with Michael epitomizes vacation for me. Early on in our relationship we spent many weekends riding beach cruisers around our favorite North Carolina beach, Bald Head Island. Years later whenever we hop on bicycles, I’m always reminded of our rides together on Bald Head. Thankfully some of our favorite hotels – the Inn at Perry Cabin, the Inn at Palmetto Bluff, and Chebeague Island Inn – all have bikes for their guests to use. Exploring the town of St. Michaels and the areas of Palmetto Bluff & Chebeague on two wheels are some of my happiest memories of 2012.
Thank you all for following along with our adventures in 2012 – we’re looking forward to sharing lots more with you in 2013!