I don’t have a recipe for you. Instead, I have a preserved memory for my friends and for myself, but perhaps, I have a seed for you too. Maybe there’s an epic seafood boil in your future.
An Epic Seafood Boil in Stone Harbor, NJ
It started with one group of friends, two birthdays, and an idea that quickly became a plan: a trip to a friend’s family’s vacation home in Stone Harbor, NJ. A generous way to soak up September, to celebrate two birthdays, the friends we adore, and to eat, drink and live well. The trip fulfilled all my beach dreams: sand in my toes, sun on my shoulders, bike rides, outdoor dining, pool floats, fancy sports car rides, lighthouse peeping, Victorian house envying, and matching sweatshirts that camouflaged into the sunrise.
The birthday meal started with a few seeds. I am a seed planter. With this group, if I lay the groundwork for an idea and sprinkle it into conversation enough, the action-oriented usually take it and run with it, and they run hard. It’s a beautiful gift. This gift, the birthday dinner, resulted in several research tabs open in Safari. Where to source the key components? After a reconnaissance walk, fueled by ice cream and ocean breezes, we decided upon Donna’s Place as the source for our seafood. We decided on a market for crusty bread. We decided on lots of corn, grilling the shrimp for the added contrast, and a bed of lemons and herbs for a mild, flaky fish. We decided on crisp, pink drinks.
I don’t have a recipe for you. Instead, I have a preserved memory for my friends and for myself, but perhaps, I have a seed for you too.
Maybe there’s an epic seafood boil in your future. In the least, I hope there are quality times with good friends in your future. I hope there is ice cream in your future. I hope there are dreams and ideas you make come true, even if they are as simple as floating on a doughnut raft. I hope you dip into the nostalgic vacation memories of your childhood and share them with those who fulfill your life now.
Times are strange. Interactions are limited, so those that count need to count extra, to be cherished all the more. I’m grateful for these friends, for the birthdays, for those last summery times, for the creativity and connection I have found over kitchen counters and tables.