May 27, 2010

32 Flavors and Then Some

Pork, it's what's for dessert

A short distance from the sprong, is Rehoboth Beach, home of the boardwalk, Funland (more on this later), Dolles Saltwater Taffy, and iconic food offerings ranging from Thrasher's fries to The Ice Cream Store's bacon ice cream.  Yeah, that's right: bacon ice cream.

It was a bold concept--one that I supported--but in the end, after I purchased and consumed it, I had mixed feelings about the final product.  I expected some kind of creative way of working bacon (or bacon flavor) into an delicious ice cream flavor.  Instead, I got ice cream (basic vanilla, I think) with large chunks of smokey bacon in it.  That's it.  There was no mystery, no frozen alchemy.  It was like chocolate chip ice cream, only the chips were removed and replaced by bacon.  In the end, I found the sweet/savory flavor combination interesting, but not magical.

If you find yourself at the Delaware coast, head to Rehoboth Beach, walk down Rehoboth Avenue toward the boardwalk, and judge for yourself.  Better yet, give the "booger" ice cream a try.

May 23, 2010

Fruits de Sprong


Before Delaware, we did not know what a "sprong" was. We were just told we would be staying in Uncle Bill's cottage located on one. We knew that boats go in it and crabs come out of it. We debated whether it was a new kind of body of water that we had never before experienced or a local Delaware colloquialism for something with which we were already familiar (bay, river, inlet, etc.). We finally settled on it being local, Dela-speak for "prong," as in the branch of a river. We liked our new word. It was satisfying to say.


Sadly, the word only existed in a fleeting period of accidental mispronounciation.  It turns out, there is no such thing as "sprong."  The cottage was actually set on a "prong," a thin body of water stretching inland from Rehoboth Bay.  It was a nice little prong, with ospreys (we think) soaring above and rabbits hopping on the banks, but definitely not a sprong. 

We were told that crabs live there, somewhere in the depths, and there were crab pots in the garage of the cottage.  As we were short on time, we decided to let professionals do the catching and cooking, which is how we ended up here

That's Dick on the left, with the eye patch and pipe

The place was chock full of of kitsch, americana, and all the colorful, full-blown innuendo you would expect from a place called "Crabby Dick's."  That evening, we drank Yuenglings and hammered away, with our small wooden mallets, at a dozen and a half blue crabs piled on brown paper.  They were delicious, whichever sprong they sprung from.

May 20, 2010

Hyperlinked Haiku About Donkeys

rum punch on the beach
 underneath the seagrape trees
where are the donkeys?

May 18, 2010

Resort Lizard

The iguana of my dreams

As a child, my family had a lot of pets.  We started with the traditional family cat and dog, then moved on to a slew of rabbits (that's slew, not stew)--starting with "Starsky" and continuing on through a steady stream of androgynously-named (no one wanted to check) soft, fuzzy, brown, black, white and grey bunnies.  There were a few guinea pigs and miscellaneous rodents in the mix, the last one--a small, brown, vampire of a hamster--ended badly, with a nasty bite to my index finger, immediately followed by a slow arc through the air and soft and final thud on the carpet.

After that, I shifted my attention to cold-blooded critters.  I had an aquarium full of tropical fish for some time, but I never was very good at cleaning the algae off the glass walls and plastic plants.  Eventually, after they all died--it could have been way after they all died since the visibility was obscured by all of that algae--I drained the aquarium.  Don't worry, the fish died of natural causes that did not involve an eyes-wide-open porcelin slide into oblivion. 

Iguana tracks

This led me to my reptile phase (doesn't everyone have a reptile phase?).  I really wanted an iguana, but the idea of a giant lizard roaming freely around the house eating her plants did not immediately appeal to my mom.  So, I settled for a smaller version--a normal-sized lizard that could easily be contained in an aquarium and subsist on crickets and mealworms.  My miniature iguana-substitute led a brief, boring life before joining the others in critter heaven (a.k.a. a small plot in the backyard or the suburban septic tank version of burial-at-sea) and I left for college. 

Happiness is a palm tree and a large lizard

I guess I've never fully gotten over my iguana-thing, as I was a bit fixated on them, to LSB's amusement (or was that unease?), while on our recent vacation in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Loads of these guys roamed the hotel grounds in St. John--climbing trees, grazing on flowers, and doing other cool lizardlike things.  I watched them with with interest, took way too many photos, and followed their tracks on the beach, but I did not take one home to our apartment.  I think the customs people frown on that sort of thing.