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Tradition

Tradition

DSC_1533No, I’m not talking about the father trying to marry off his daughters. You know, the guy playing the fiddle on the roof.

I’m talking about whenever you’re on the East Coast, if you’re like me, you have to have fresh lobster. You may be able to get lobster shipped to you nearly year-round, but there is something special about picking up some fresh bugs (as the locals refer to them), throwing them in a pot, and having a fresh lobster feed of your own.

 

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So, you already know you want fresh lobster, but where do you go? There are so many places, how can you tell the good ones from the not so good ones. One way is to look up reviews and then try to find one that’s perfect. Bayley’s Lobster Pound might be perfect. Bayley’s Lobster Pound not only sells live lobster, but they will cook them for you on the spot. Plus, they will give you cooking instructions for your own lobster feast. They also provide lobster meat, crabmeat, cold water shrimp, tiger shrimp, crab claws, haddock, salmon, swordfish, tuna, sole, halibut, little neck, oysters, and the list goes on. The list of seafood I just described is seasonal, but you can see that at Bayley’s you’re going to get a wide selection. They also ship overnight.

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Perhaps the next time you’re visiting the East Coast, especially Maine, on your upland hunt of a lifetime, you’ll start your trip off with the tradition of your own lobster feast. Enjoy.

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October 31, 2016 - 8:17 am

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Guest post by Dale Jantzen

 

 

 

Guaranteed

Dale and Patty

Dale and Patty

 

 

I can’t hit the broadside of a barn.  Sheeeesh.  With my shotgun I mean.  I had six or seven chances one day last week and missed them all.  The worst miss was at close range.  The dogs were telling us there was a bird in a thick patch of thorn bushes right across one of the canals from where we were walking, maybe 10 yards.  Ron saw the pheasant before it flushed, the white collar standing out plainly in the dark fall foliage.  He pointed it out so we were all ready when it came up.  Three arrows flew (Ron, Willie and Cary).  A fraction of a second later I shot and the bird was clearly hit.  The first thing that Ron said was, “Hey, you shot my arrow!” and we laughed.  Next he was telling me I had hit the bird and that he had managed a touch too.  The bird had flown on a bit and then crumpled over the adjacent alpha alpha field.

It took us a few minutes to get to a bridge to cross the canal and then another ten before Ripley found him, still alive and still willing to attempt to fly.  Ron managed to put another arrow into him, in the air, and then he was in the game vest.

 

 

For the next hour or two (and the next miss or two) we enjoyed the hunt.  Then, at the end of the day, Ron wanted to do an autopsy to see who had shot the bird.  No problem.  We are always talking up the hunt.  Who had made which shots?  How had Ripley done?  How had Penny done?  I knew that I had hit it so I was more than willing to check the bird out.  But after the ladies had cleaned it up, we found evidence that two arrow had made contact but not a pellet hole anywhere to be seen.  Damn!  I really can’t hit the broadside of a barn.

 

 

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It must be my shotgun, right?  First of all, my choke configuration is kind of messed up for pheasant hunting.  We typically are pretty close to these birds when they flush so an Improved Cylinder/Modified configuration would probably be pretty good.  Unfortunately my shotgun is Modified/Full.  That’s a good excuse to keep handy.  Second, Lance the gun fitter put a different pad on my gun at the end of last year.  It worked fine then but now i’m noticing that it is a little stickier than i’ve been used to.  It must be affecting my gun mount.  Another good excuse that I will use when needed.  But when I’m really honest with myself, I know that I’ve never been a crack shot and have often had periods of crap shooting.  It’s not the gun’s fault.

 

Ron has some guidance for me:

  1. At home, practice mounting and swinging the gun.  (Obviously not loaded but I’m going to write that down anyway.)
  2.  Get some snap caps so that you can actually pull the triggers.
  3.  Stick a MiniMagLite in the end of the barrel to indicate where the gun is aimed.
  4. Swing through the shot.  DON’T STOP THE SWING!
  5. Practice until muscle fatigue sets in.

“Do this and I guarantee you’ll never miss again.”  I liked that promise so we stopped in Vacaville at “Gun’s, Fishing and Other Stuff” on the way home and I picked up some snap caps.  Ready for practice.

 

 

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At home, as usual, I got caught up with life and didn’t make the effort.  When the next hunting opportunity came along it was only just the night before that I brought out the shot gun and snap caps and a mini-mag light and spent 10 or 15 minutes swinging the gun around the family room.  I “shot” all of the pot lights in the ceiling and each of the corners in the room.  That was easy.  Ron never said how much practice was needed.  And I’ll never miss again?  Wow!

Ripley and Penny scared up half a dozen birds again that day.  My shooting?  One for six.  The one that I hit was a tough crossing shot.  The five that I missed were all ridiculously easy shots at rising birds or birds flying straight away from me.  So much for Ron’s guarantees.  I don’t think i’m going to bother practicing anymore.

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Treat Yourself

 

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You all know I love my popup four wheel camper; In fact, soon I will share how I camp free most of the time.

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This is a photo I took on the south end of the Marathon key looking towards Key West. I was getting about a one second exposure with my camera on its slowest setting. There was a good lightning storm and I wanted to capture it. I used my polarized filter as a low-density filter and got about a 15 second exposure. I took one photo after another with the extended exposure. Over 120 shots later, I got this one.

 

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Then we went north to do something really fun. My wife wanted to swim with the manatees so we did some research and came across a resort called the Plantation on Crystal River. The reviews are great and the photos were quite impressive, almost intimidating.

 

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We were surprised to find out the prices were very competitive and they offered incredible amenities. They had a world-class golf course which my brother would love, being a writer for a golf magazine for many years.

 

 

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My wife and I made the decision to stay a few nights at the Plantation and treat ourselves.

 

If you love the idea of true Southern hospitality with all its charm and grace, look no farther. The rooms were spotless, the facility breathtaking, and dining excellent. Terry, one of the management team, told me this is what people traveled to Florida for before the mouse. Being a fisherman and recognizing a perfect cast and great presentation I bit, what do you mean mouse?

 

Terry smiled and replied, Mickey Mouse. We both laughed and I understood there is much more to a Florida vacation than Disney World.

 

Back of Hotel HERO SHOT

 

 

I’m only going to post a couple of photos because if you want to treat yourself, I want the Plantation to take your breath away like it did for us.

 

She crab soup

 

The Plantation is located a few blocks away from a small shopping center, as well as a breakfast spot known as Grannies. This is comfort food at its best. In fact, I felt that my readership would hold it against me if I did not mention this place. Easy on the wallet, but very hard on the waistline. The portions were so large, we found ourselves eating just two meals per day; the morning at Grannies and the evening at the Plantation. Just another good reason to check out this resort.

 

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I will have a follow-up article regarding the Plantation and our manatee encounter. It was spectacular with some really cool video I would like to share. I cannot do the video justice on the road, so I will post the manatee encounter when I return home. You won’t want to miss the photos, video, and stories of our guide Capt. John. He is a true Florida treasure and can be found at the Plantation.

 

 

Manatee 5

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Hidden Gems 2

My goal is to bring attention to restaurants or places that I feel are noteworthy. All my meals are paid for by myself, tip included. Every once in a while, I will modify my travel plans just to see if a place’s reputation is deserved. I traveled nearly 6 hours out of my way to stop at Oklahoma Joe’s barbecue restaurant. Oklahoma Joe’s has possibly won more barbecue awards than any other restaurant. I had to see if it was for real. If you’re near Broken Arrow, Oklahoma this is a must stop. Kelsey, the manager, was super informative and you can tell the whole staff lives and breathes barbecue.

 

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This is Kursten with my meal.

The meat flaked off the bone and every bite exploded with flavor. I could go on and on about the food but you’d just be frustrated that you’re not there. I’ll just say, if you’re near Oklahoma, Oklahoma Joe’s is worth a visit

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This is the first time I’ve ever reviewed a trailer park. The name is Jude Travel Park and it’s in New Orleans. Marla and Kevin Hubble run the park; it’s their home with RV sites behind them, and that is the way it feels.

Marla and Kevin will help you back-up into your site, explain the facility and its amenities, and you will feel right at home. It’s less than 10 minutes from the French quarters. It goes without saying, dining there is off the hook.

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Jude Travel Park very clean

Enjoy New Orleans

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More Hidden Gems

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I don’t normally review chains but felt I had to mention the Rib Crib. I came across the Rib Crib in Al Marillo Texas. I asked the restaurant manager Brittany to describe my meal. This is what she wrote:   “Ron, today you had the Pigman (named after our champion BBQ Team) with seasoned fries. Our Pigman sandwich features our slow smoked sliced brisket, pulled pork, and polish sausage covered in a secret sauce topped with pickles and onions. This half pound sandwich is sure to leave your taste buds satisfied and your belly full.” That would be an understatement.

 

 

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I had that sandwich and enough seasoned french fries to feed three people, with a tall beer. I had to check the tab because I easily paid more for a single cocktail elsewhere. It was easy to tip Kendal after finding out she’s some kind of karate expert. Kendal was great as was the rest of the staff. If you’re near Amarillo, I think you’ll be pleased.

 

Stay tuned, I’m sure I will have more hidden gems as I travel across the country on what looks like will be an upland hunt of a lifetime.

 

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September 2, 2016 - 1:00 am

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