Nicolas has been living in his camper for the last 10 months, but he hadn’t taken it anywhere, so he was hoping to get some time off later this summer for a vacation. When it started looking like that wasn’t going to be possible with his work schedule, he decided that a mini vacation close to home was better than nothing.
So, he put in a request for a couple days of leave to combine with his weekend off, and we made a reservation for him here at Kiptopeke State Park.
He got home early on Friday and spent several hours getting the camper ready to travel – it takes a while to get ready when you’ve been stationary for 10 months!! It’s only about a 70 mile drive from his campground to here, and he made good time . . . but hit a roadblock at the Bridge-Tunnel. There was a thunderstorm with high winds moving through the Norfolk & Virginia Beach area, so they closed the bridge down right as he got there! He ended up waiting almost 1-1/2 hours for the bridge to re-open! We didn’t even get any of the storm over here on this side of the bridge!
He finally texted me that they were letting them cross, and he made his way the last 20 miles of his trip! We had saved him a site in our loop, and he easily backed in and got set up. We were getting a little drizzle by then, but it wasn’t too bad. Once he was all set up, we had dinner and relaxed. Nick was pretty tired from working all night on Thursday, so we skipped the campfire, and he went to bed early.
Saturday was really windy! Nicolas brought his new kayak with him, but the water was way too rough to use it that day. We did our morning and afternoon rounds, and after lunch we went into Cape Charles to look through the shops and go to church.
There are some cute shops in Cape Charles, and more under development, but it didn’t take us too long to walk through all of them. We still had some time to kill before 5pm mass, so we walked down a couple of the residential streets – admiring the historic houses,
and even went to an open house.
Some of these old homes are so cute . . .
How’s that for a “fixer-upper”??
After mass, we went back to the campground for dinner and a campfire. Nicolas was still catching up on his sleep, and almost fell asleep out at the fire!
The wind died down somewhat on Sunday, so Nicolas decided to put his kayak in the water and take it for a paddle around the concrete ships.
The water still looked a little rough!
He paddled through the kayak launch,
and out into the bay.
The concrete ships are there to create a barrier from the open water of the Bay, and do provide quite a bit of protection, but there were still some waves on the water.
Nicolas made his way out toward the ships, but he said that the water got rougher, the further he got out.
He said the waves were washing over the kayak, so he turned around right away and headed back.
He said the kayak was really stable, though, even with the wind and waves!
We kept an eye on him from the pier as he made his way back!
Safely back into the kayak launch! It was a short, but successful, first trip!
Shortly after Nicolas got the kayak back up to the site, our friends from his campground, Brian, Janetta, and their daughter Tessa, arrived at the park. We all headed to the beach for the afternoon – it was still windy, but a beautiful day!
Some people thought the water was cold . . . but they don’t know cold water!
Nick and Tessa didn’t think it was cold!
Tessa decided that she wanted to be buried in the sand, so Nick was happy to accommodate her!
She was having fun, but the wind kept blowing sand into her face!
So once she was buried, her MOM had the great idea to stick a cheeto in the sand on top of her and see if a seagull would come get it!
One got pretty close, but Tessa’s screaming scared him away!
Next they tried putting the cheeto between her toes! Poor girl!
She was not thrilled with this game, and didn’t stay still to see if the seagull would come back! That was enough of that!
Back at the camper, we got cleaned up, and Tessa went back to riding her new bike, courtesy of Uncle Tom.
Some campers had left it behind earlier in the week, so Tom picked it up. He thought it just had a flat tire, so we picked up a new tube and got it rideable. It turned out that the shifter wasn’t working either, but she did just fine with a single gear. Her Dad can get the shifter fixed later.
She was a very happy girl with her new pink bike!
We grilled chicken, pork chops and fresh corn for dinner, and then enjoyed a delicious fruit trifle for dessert. Brian made an angel food cake in his Inst-Pot, and Janetta topped it with peaches and berries, and whipped cream. YUM!
It was a really fun day, and we were glad they came out to the park for a visit!
On Monday, we went for a bike ride on the trails.
We showed Nicolas the overlooks of the Bay (and he noticed that the water was much calmer than the day before!),
he thought about taking the jump down to the beach, but then thought better of it --
and we showed him where to find wild blackberries.
It was a great day for a bike ride – not too hot, and not too windy, just a nice breeze.
We got back from our bike ride and Nicolas decided to give the kayak another try.
The conditions were much better!
He cruised around the pier and followed the shoreline towards the Bridge-Tunnel. Without having to fight the wind and waves, he was moving along really well.
He was out for about an hour, and said it was a nice paddle . . . but that a motor would be nice!
We wrapped up Nick’s vacation with a steak dinner and a campfire in the evening. It was a great weekend!
On Tuesday after breakfast, he started getting ready to go home. It didn’t take nearly as long to get packed up to go home as it did to get ready to come here!
All hitched up and ready to go!
Bye, Nick! We hate seeing him go, but loved having him here for the long weekend!
He got back home with no issues, and got the camper set back up in his permanent spot. It was a successful first trip out in the camper!