Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The few, the proud... the people who go to marine museums when its really cold outside

We're not a family that gets held back by a lot.  Cerebral palsy, being outnumbered by kids, weather... not a big deal.  We like to get out and about.  Sometimes to find some fun, sometimes to combat boredom, and sometimes just to try something new.

We visited my dad (Grandpa) and stepmom (Grandmama) for a quick trip this past weekend in Maryland.  Sometimes I miss living in Maryland... the proximity to DC, the Chesapeake Bay and my family and friends can't be beat!  When we visit, I like to do something quintessentially Maryland... eat crab cakes, visit the aquarium in Baltimore, drive by my old high school and convince Nate that it does NOT look like a prison.  Fun stuff.

This past weekend, we decided that we would venture across the Chesapeake and visit the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels.  Seemed like a good way to share some Bay history with my family.  Who cares that as the week went on, the weather forecast looked more and more miserable!  We're Slaviks!  We do crazy things sometimes.  We grabbed Nana Jean, my brother Drew and soon-to-be sister-in-law Nicole to torture them have them come with us for a great time.

The temperature kept dropping.  It snowed a little the night before, and rained during the morning of our planned day trip.  We persisted.  We took a long detour along the Eastern Shore to get past a bad accident on Route 50.  Finally we arrived.

And the first thing out of our mouths... is it even open?  There were maybe 2 cars in the parking lot.  Things were looking grim.

But we unloaded anyway.  Nana in her wheelchair, Will and Matt in hiking backpacks, Luke bundled up on foot.  My kids refused to wear gloves.  Off we went to find some people... some mariners... some true grit Marylanders.

The on and off sprinkly Rochester-esque rain persisted for the remainder of the afternoon.  We were happy to find that the visitor center was open, as was the museum.  I think we woke the staff of the museum from their mid-winters nap, though, when we walked in the front door... I mean come on.  Who goes to an outdoor maritime museum in the middle of February?

The museum is made up of several buildings, and the only real outdoor part is when you're walking in between the buildings.  I suppose when the weather is nice, one might dawdle outside between buildings and enjoy the views of historic St. Michaels.   Not us.  The goal was to get between the buildings quick, to stay warm and dry!

All weather jokes aside, what a great place!  We toured a skipjack restoration project, walked through a grounded tug boat, enjoyed some Bay history, climbed in an old crabbing boat, went below deck in an oyster boat, and saw some ducks.  We hadn't gotten to the steamboat building by the time the museum closed for the day - we were all kind of bummed that we didn't get to finish our tour.  Aside from Will's antics, we had a really great time.  I think we'd like to go back again... but maybe when it is more than 30 degrees outside, the lighthouse is open, and you can take boat tours of the Bay.  I think Will would LOVE that.

Everyone was frozen by the end.  We loaded back into the vehicles and headed home (stopping at High's for some hot chocolate and snacks on the way - another Maryland tradition - haha).  The skies opened up for some torrential rains on the way back to Shady Side.  It was like Mother Nature was saying "hope you enjoyed your time outside and congratulations on getting back into your car."

So without further ado, our visit to the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in photos...

No comments: