a la campagne

summer fact:
every girl needs to get out of the city once in awhile. i'm not normally a big complainer, but the humidity, the crowds, the noise, the bummer air quality - you know, they can really get to ya. every foray out of the house is cause for a change of t-shirt. a quick game of tennis and you need to drink a gallon and a half of water. august rolls around and it's time to scoot. even a few days can provide weeks of relief.

so a few fridays ago, lauren, halimah and i packed up the car with groceries, beers, bathing suits (and stripe-y, cotton-y vacay clothes) and all trekked out to our aunt and uncle's charming cabin in rhinebeck, new york. the drive was lovely, winding through verdant back roads and past farmland and rickety general stores that sell pizza and ice cream. a lovelier feeling can not be found than cruising across state lines on a sunny friday afternoon (not at work!), windows down, easy conversation and the laughter of your friends wafting on the breeze. we arrived around 3PM, settled in, and took a quick dip in the lake. the city grime just melted away.

friday night we cooked a light but hearty meal of pasta w/ sauteed veggies and a generous handful of fresh mozzarella, fresh corn, and a big, green salad. a dozen beers and a raucous game of "would you rather?" it was time for bed. to the tune of crickets and nothing else, we all drifted off to sleep.

on saturday, we drove into the town of rhinebeck, an adorable (too adorable, maybe?) town with all the things you'd expect from a little enclave where new yorker city folk frolic throughout the weekends and summers. these types of environments can be a bit saccharine sometimes, especially in contrast with from whence you came. but our moods were light in the crystalline sunshine, and we set off in search of interesting finds. first we spent a good solid hour in an antique store, where amongst amazing but way expensive furniture, random objects and framed art i found and bought this kick ass jacket with puffy sleeves and metallic plaid:

nestled amongst one overpriced boutique and lame gallery after another, one other really awesome store in rhinebeck was a small market called grand cru. this store carried literally 4 kinds of things: craft beers, artisinal cheeses, random sweets and pickles - what else do you need? i think the store is relatively new, and seemed a little empty, but otherwise it was pretty damn cute.

they carried Monk's Beer. woot!

the sweet country air and our shopping ventures worked up our appetites. the ladies and i lunched (it's ok to use silly verbs like "lunched" when on vacation) at the gorgeous and well respected terrapin. halimah ordered a fried cod sandwich, and sissy and i went halvsies on a farmer's market salad, a cup of corn soup and a plate of nachos.

sweet corn, fingerling potatoes, peas, pattypan squash, heirloom tomatoes, and ricotta

chilled corn soup (coconutty and clean) w/ simple nachos

on the way back to the car, we stopped for ice cream cones, and the results were too decadent to photograph. not really, but we did have to walk it off for a few minutes before the sugar buzzed car ride home. more rowboating and swimming and languishing in the hazy afternoon.

a mixed veggie grill was served up for dinner, and then we headed outside to build a fire. with halimah's direction, we built actually quite a nice fire, and talked around it for awhile. we even sang. we sang! a sure sign that it's about time to head back to the city.

a quick sunday morning breakfast was followed by a vigorous cleaning session. magazines were placed back into neat stacks, records returned to smooth sleeves. we set out on the road around noon, headed toward new jersey. we had one more stop to make before settling back at home - 3rd annual making time pool party! a batty idea to throw that ruckus on our relaxing weekend, perhaps (and the day was gray and drizzly), but we had an awesome time nonetheless. my camera was out of batteries by then, and i got chatty and distracted anyway, so i didn't take any photos.

i slept so hard that night and woke on monday morning, a little tanner, somehow a little tired-er, and yet still refreshed. the edges of the city were softer, and i felt ready for the weeks, and the months ahead.


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