What has developed into a “yearly” tradition, my family and I headed up to Vermont again for the third time in the past four years. So we skipped a year as we opted for Maine last year. This time around, we made our way to Burlington. No, not the coat factory (sorry, I had too) but a lively small city in Northern Vermont.
As is the case with most trips and getaways, I had no idea where we were going until the last moment. Let me correct that, I’m sure she told me about it but I just simply forgot (or wasn’t paying attention). The ride up was, as expected, long and scenic, ergo, beautiful. Still, save for a numb rear end, the destination and the time spent with my family was absolutely worth the trip as is always the case.
We arrived in Essex, VT and had a WTF moment when the GPS prompted us to make a right turn. Naturally, I did so and realized that I turned into what looked like a dead-end. Oh, how wrong I was. We were not met by a brick wall. No, instead, were met by a body of water. Damn you GPS, I thought! I got back on the main road and the estimated time of arrival to the hotel was now longer. Wait, did I miss or turn or something, I said aloud to my wife to which she responded. No, I think we have to cross said body of water. Naturally, I scoffed at this remark.
By George, she was right! We pulled up to a booth and a nice lady advised us of the next ferry and, yes, my car will be boarding. What?! (went through my head) I never thought that I would board a boat with my car. But, here I was, and it was pretty awesome!
We got to the hotel, dropped off our belongings and headed into town where we had dinner and watched the sunset. Afterward, I hit up some record shops and found the soundtrack to A Most Violent Year at Pure Pop Records, sealed on vinyl for $9.00 (thank you very much). Then, the three of us just hung around the town, listened to live music and watched my little girl dance like a mad woman on the streets of Burlington to music in the open air. It was such a good time with my family, having escaped New York and leaving behind the jargon and headaches. This is what I live for!
The next day, we got some mighty good breakfast from Sneaker’s Bistro then headed over to Cohoes to entertain the child. She had a great time but, as is the case with any 4-year-old, it was not enough. So, what do kids love (and many adults with a brain and a sweet tooth)? Chocolate!
We went to the Lake Champlain Chocolates where we were “treated” to a tour and was able to divulge in some samples. I ordered a large hot cocoa while we waited for the tour to start and would you believe it if I told you my daughter spilled the hot, scorching beverage on my lap and ruined my favorite pair of pants?? Oh, I was seething, but upon discovering that I caught the moment on video when she knocked over the drink, my wife and I couldn’t help but laugh. We helped clean the mess on the floor just in time for the tour to begin. Their fair-trade dark chocolate (their specialty) was delicious!
You think that was enough? Nope. My daughter wanted to go to the playground! Of course, you do! What makes playgrounds in Vermont any different than a playground where we live, I thought. Then, I saw this!
Well played, daughter…. well played. So, she made a good call! Afterward, we were off to dinner and called it a night.
The following day we went to the Vermont Teddy Bear Headquarters where, as one would come to expect, my daughter wanted one. Being parents, and saps, we obliged to her request and purchased one. And after another long day, and with a heavy heart, we retreated from Vermont and made the long trek back home!
Until next time, Vermont!