Jane got a call from her friend Lorraine who wondered if we’d like to do a trip north to Virginia’s Eastern Shore. The oyster season had begun and I was more than interested. You see Lorraine Eaton is the food writer for The states main newspaper, The Virginian Pilot, and has an encyclopedic knowledge of the culinary secrets of this glorious part of the world.
It took a millisecond to say “Yes!” Read the rest of this entry »
Tangier is a small sand island in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay, Virginia, on the east coast of America. My next book is set on a fictitious version of Tangier and researching it was the real reason for my trip to the States.
I’d read about Tangier in 2007. Bill Bryson mentioned in his book, The Mother Tongue, the archaic Elizabethan dialect spoken by the inhabitants of the isolated Island. I’ve remained curious about how such a quaint anomaly can exist in a connected, modern world.
Tangier Island is famous for its soft shell crabs, oysters and striped bass. The fishermen who ply their trade there are called Watermen.
And sadly it’s also famous for being the island that is slowly disappearing into the sea. I felt a compulsion to see it before it was too late! Read the rest of this entry »
The plan was to explore the South Fork of Long Island, the true Hampton’s. A place where the super rich of New York have their holiday homes, spend long summers and big dollars. It’s a place of pretty little towns, South, East and West Hampton and grand estates. Jay Gatsby lived in the South Fork…
Sag Harbor, on the other side of the bay from Shelter Island would be our destination. Jane knew of an interesting restaurant there and thought it would be a good place to stop for lunch. Read the rest of this entry »
Our trip continues and we eventually reach Greenport, at the top end of the North Fork. From there we take the Ferry to Shelter Island. I look out across the water, see a yacht and am instantly reminded of my own sailing adventure a few weeks back. I contemplate how nice it would be to do a bit of sailing in this part of the world.
Jane tells me Shelter Island was named because it was used as a haven for boats during the hurricane season. It’s still a safe place during the stormy season, Jane’s friend had called only a few days ago to say they were moored there during a particularly rough night.
I was curious to see what this safe haven actually looked like. Read the rest of this entry »
The sign out front of the quaint white church said ‘Journey to Forever’…. well I didn’t think we were going quite that far but it seemed like a pleasant invitation to come explore the beautiful North Fork of Long Island. Read the rest of this entry »
It’s 3am Monday morning, I’ve hardly slept, have a plane to catch and might as well get up. It’s a very long way from Melbourne to my sisters place in The Hampton’s on the East Coast of America. I will fly from Melbourne to Sydney, then L.A., then New York and finish with two trains, to reach my final destination… thousands of miles away and about 30 hours later. Read the rest of this entry »
August is the month where all those Christmas party conceptions come to bear. Nearly every day we seem to be celebrating the birthday of a family member or close friend. We don’t go much on gift giving excesses but we do like to celebrate these special days with food and more specifically Mum’s chocolate birthday cake. Read the rest of this entry »
We’d booked a berth at the Hamilton Island marina thinking it might be interesting to see what the place had to offer. That was at the beginning of our trip. Since then we’d been at sea for 6 nights and had settled into this boaty existence so well that we were a little reluctant to head to land.
Honestly I wasn’t expecting much… some tacky resort aging badly after its hey day in the late 80’s, overpriced beach wear, ridiculously expensive souvenirs and glitzy hotels.
I was wrong. Read the rest of this entry »