Royal Oak, Maryland
We have been very busy this summer and have not taken much time to have fun or to just sit and relax. Our friends Ann and Lu invited us to be with them over Labor Day Weekend at their beautiful home on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, near Royal Oak, Maryland. Tradition says the name comes from a huge Oak tree that was hit by two cannon balls fired by the British Navy in the war of 1812. No one seems to know if this story is really true or not. Certainly it could be as the British Navy sailed up the Chesapeake Bay after burning to attack Baltimore and Ft. McHenry.
We have known Ann and Lu since 1988 when they were rather newly wed graduate students. We met while waiting at the airport to send two different scholars home to Xi'an, China where they were professors. After the plane carrying these two men had taken off, the four of us went for a snack and something to drink and talked for a long time. Out of this casual chance meeting came a beautiful friendship that has grown with each year. Their family now
Early morning light, looking West
Standing on the dock and looking West toward the end of the creek. Creeks here are BIG. They are salt water inlets from the Bay.
has two sons and a daughter. The two older boys stayed home in Virginia this weekend as Kevin was helping Christopher learn to drive. Melissa and her friend from Sidwell School Aiyana came with us. It has been so much fun to watch the children grow from the day we first saw Kevin when he was so tiny all he could manage to do was open one eye at a time until today when he is a sophomore in college. Christopher is a junior in high school and taller than both his big brother and his dad (both tall men). Melissa at 13 is taller than her mom (one of her life's goals she told me). All three are attractive physically and if possible even more attractive in their personalities. Needless to say they inherited good brains from both mom and dad and their grandparents so they excel in school, music, dance and sports. They have long honored us by calling us GrandBill and GrandNancy. Their real grandparents also now live in Virginia and treat us as family members too. It is so wonderful to be part of this family as friends and almost relatives. Though they couldn't come along
The swimming pool
Our bedroom in the Guest House overlooked this pool and right out to the dock and the water. Magnificent!
this weekend, the grandparents seemed to be there through gifts of special sauces for our noodle meal, muffins for breakfast and home made bread to enjoy all weekend.
We had a wonderful time full of relaxation, good talk, belly laughs at silly videos, wonderful scenery to view and the special joy of time with folks you love.
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