August 1, 2008
Christi was actually up before me Friday morning. We had our usual leisurely time in the morning with our coffee. Sometime around 10am, we decided to go get something to eat and try to find a place in Salem, NH, called “America’s Stonehenge.”
We decided on a little restaurant called “The Golden Egg.” It was fabulous! Friendly service and the food was great. Christi had a special called “Fire-eaters Eggs,” I had a smoked salmon omelet, and Steph had chocolate chip pancakes. Christi’s won. I had a couple bites of her eggs, and they were “to die for.” My omelet was good, but not as good as the Fire-eaters.”
After breakfast, we set out for Salem. We had to go back into Massachusetts a bit on I-95, then back into New Hampshire on the 495. We finally found the place, thanks to our GPS thingy. It was waaaaay off the beaten path, with not a lot of signs along the way. Christi was skeptical.
We got there and went in to the main building, where we purchased our admissions. There was a 10-minute video presentation in a side room that explained the origins (or the unknown nature of the origins) of the place called “America’s Stonehenge.” There are parts of this place that have been dated back 4000 years. Much like the original Stonehenge, the origins and purpose of the place is unknown.
After the video, we set out up the trail (according to one of the girls in the shop, there would be approximately ½ mile of walking. About halfway up the first trail, Steph started freaking out on us. She didn’t want to walk, she was afraid of bugs, etc. This has happened several times on our vacation, I just didn’t write about them. This one was probably the worst, though. Finally, Christi just took her back to the gift shop so I could try to enjoy the place.
So I continued on by myself. It was a very interesting walk, and there were quite a few things of interest on the way. The central point of the whole structure seems to be a walk-in cave/chamber that the archeologists have named “The Oracle Chamber.” So named because of long tube hewn in the rocks that is called “The Speaking Tube.” There was also a place within the Oracle Chamber where a person could crawl in, hide and observe everything without being seen.
I followed all the numbers along the way, and tried to get a picture of every spot in the exhibit. I don’t really think the place lives up to its name, “America’s Stonehenge,” but I do admit that there is something strange and inviting about it. There are large stones around the periphery of the structure. The next to last stop on the trail is a large, wooden platform (from the ground, it looks like a children’s playground), from where you can overlook the whole area. There is an astronomical chart in the middle of the platform which points at the various large stones on the periphery. Each one designates a point of sunrise or sunset, such as the equinoxes, and various other dates. It was quite fascinating.
A lot of the structures in the area have been rebuilt by the archeologists, some as long as seven years ago. There are excavations, in the area, though, that they have dated back several thousand years.
Whether or not the marking stones around the outside are authentic or not, I can’t say. Do we believe the archeologists, or are they making stuff up? Who knows? It is all very interesting, though.
I got back to the gift shop, we bought some sodas, and headed back to the house.
We discussed dinner plans, and decided on a place in Rye we had passed several times, called “The Carriage House.” It had a sign that said “Casual Dining.” But it didn’t open until 5pm, so we waited a few hours, while lounging around and enjoying the ocean. We did that a lot this week, which was the primary purpose for being here.
The Carriage House was a charming little restaurant. Pricy, but the atmosphere was really nice, and the people were very friendly. Turns out was sat right next to the bar upstairs (we had a spectacular view of the nearby beach), and I had an ongoing conversation with the bartender about Manny and the Red Sox.
As for the food, well, it was different, that’s for sure. Christi and Stephanie both had a Philly Cheese-steak Wrap that came with fries, but they were sweet potato fries. Christi didn’t like those, but Steph did. I had one of the daily specials, which was grilled swordfish with a sauce that I can neither spell nor pronounce. They had a half-portion available, so I got that. It had a large shrimp on it, along with a bed of rice, a huge broccoli sprout, and some stuff that looks like it came out of the yard. I ate everything but the yard stuff. Turns out, the waitress read the special wrong. It was supposed to have been salmon. But, since she told me swordfish, the chef made it with swordfish. I’m not sure I would have cared. It was very good. We decided to have some dessert, there, too. Christi and Stephanie shared a thing at the waitress’s suggestion that was kind of a hot fudge croissant. I had Crème Brule. Holy cow! I have only had that once before, and I have loved it both times.
It was the most expensive meal on our trip, but it was really good and enjoyable.
We headed on back to the house, to watch a thick fog roll in while Steph and I watched the Red Sox game. They won!! 2-1. And Jason Bay scored BOTH runs. Later, I saw a clip of Manny hitting into a double play to end the Dodgers game, and then a clip of him doing that thing where he doesn’t run after the ball. There was a ball hit out to left-center and the center-fielder beat Manny to it. He looked kind of lost.
The really cool thing was that, when Jason Bay came up to bat the first time, he got a standing “O” that lasted several minutes. Boston fans….there’s nothin’ like ‘em!
Unfortunately, the Sunbeams won again, too. But the Halos beat the Evil Empire again, 1-0 (in the ninth inning!), and the Rangers battled back to beat the Blue Jays. So it was a mostly good night.
The power went off in the middle of the night, around 1:30am. Stayed off for almost two hours, which made sleeping difficult, especially for me, because of that machine I have to use. I don’t sleep well without it, because I have sleep apnea. But it finally came back on a little before 4am, so we got another few hours of sleep.
I’m typing this all on Saturday morning at around 8:30. We have to leave our little paradise in about an hour and a half. I’m going to get in my devotional time before we have to leave, so I will close for now.
It’s been a pretty remarkable week.