Gulf Shores ’08

My adult Sunday School class has been organizing a trip down to the gulf coast every summer for the past several years now. It’s gradually grown from a handful of families to well over 100 people. One of the things that’s great about going with such a big group of close friends is that there’s always a bunch of kids for your kids to hang out with and there’s always a party in someones condo each night.
This year, Rachel and I decided to brave the chaos of a full family trip to the beach that included my teenage kids, plus one friend (Connor McCoy) and all five of our little kids. (They’re all grade school age now, so I guess they’re not so little after all.) That’s 10 people in all! Our condo at The Lighthouse, which was a beautiful and spacious 3-bedroom spread on the 11th floor, was more than adequate.
Since we’re Methodists, we truly appreciate the fact that Jesus’ first miracle was to make more booze so that a wedding party could continue way past the point where the average guest was well sauced. The Lord wanted us to enjoy life (within moderation). With that in mind, the ever crafty Don McEachern figured a way to get a pina colada/margarita machine onto the beach. Oh snap! That’s true brilliance!
I was disappointed that I had to spend the first three days of the vacation hunkered down in the condo finishing my latest book. OTOH, I was happy that, with today’s technology, I can go to the beach and work there rather than having to go into an office. Plus, I finished the book! Also, since I get sunburns so easily, it was the first time in maybe 8 years that I didn’t get a raging sunburn. So easing into the week turned out to be a really good thing in other ways too.
The kids had an awesome time throughout the week. Their favorite things, besides the pools and the beach of course, was the Waterville theme park and The Tracks amusements place. Unlike last year when Katie got angry that she got soaked by the bumper boats, she and all the kids really enjoyed the bumper boats and totally soaked ME. Maybe that’s the key? Soaking dad makes getting a little wet yourself lots more fun.
One of the places that we really enjoyed was a restaurant called Lambert’s, Home of the Throwed Roll. This place gave away more food as appetizers than many places serve on a regular dinner – black-eyed peas, fried okra, macaroni & tomato, fried potatos, and of course their huge hot rolls that the toss to you as they walk by. It was a lot of fun and an impressive operation due to it’s huge scale.

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