S: Mom and Dad's 50th in Bermuda--June 2011
FC: Marking 50 years of Marriage: John and Denny Mom and Dad Grama and Poppa Bermuda June 2011
1: "Pirates Cove"--Mom and Dad chose a great house and a spectacular location (Southampton parish). 180 degree views, with pool and ocean water right out front. | Reconvene here in five years or so?
2: John & Denny and Troy & Liz are the advance team on Saturday, with Johnny & Mary coming Sunday (English Muffins safely through customs!) and Kimmy & Dan Monday. After scooter rentals and a great lunch at Henry VIII, we get our bearings, figure out the house, grounds, pool, etc.
3: The cast of characters It was just the eight of us, and we desperately missed the kids/grandkids!
5: We soon found nearby Whale beach (left) and enjoyed body surfing galore--including an enthusiastic Grama Denny. Tuesday, much of the gang did a scooter excursion to Spanish Point and Admiralty House Park for a swim, with lunch after in Hamilton. Troy and Poppa play golf at Port Royal in high winds.
6: More from the Spanish Point/Hamilton scooter excursion (upper right) before cocktails on the veranda (each night without fail). Then Grama and Poppa head for their romantic anniversary dinner at The Reefs, while the rest hit the Dockyard's Frog and Onion for dinner and evening stroll (to return by city bus--Liz attracting some attention from a local).
7: Wednesday, the whole gang hits the Jobson's Cove beach area, with lots of swimming, shell-searching, body surfing and snorkeling. It was a beautiful day to feel younger than we really are!
9: A truly glorious day of golf at Port Royal, particularly if you don't count the shots. Poppa Palmer can still bring the long drives, and Uncle Troy and Grama Denny have game. Uncle Zuba did his best not to distract the better golfers surrounding him, and occasionally sank a putt.
10: After a special dinner overlooking Bermuda's Great Sound, we celebrated the trip's occasion with Monopoly--The John & Denny 1961 to 2011 Edition. Kimmy and Liz created this one-of-a-kind anniversary version where each square of the board contained a family memory, and each Chance or Community Chest card probed us on a memorable or infamous tale. With lots of old wedding pictures, etc., it was truly the most special of gifts. We had many laughs as we inaugurated the game.
11: Miles would have loved the little geckos and toads running around near the house. Johnny and Mary did lots of snorkeling to see fish like these (below).
12: Great fun at the pool with Poppa right in the thick of it. Rumor was that Aunt Liz really did make it down the slide after much preparation but there's no proof. (JP and Mary missed the fun while touring the island. And Grama Denny must be behind the camera?)
13: Grama Denny got a tip on the cozy Gibb's Hill Lighthouse Restaurant, and it didn't disappoint. We left the motorbikes home and enjoyed great views of the entire island before and after dinner. A really nice night out together.
14: Troy and Liz enjoyed all the nooks and crannies on the island, with Troy priding himself on checking off all beaches and other high points (in addition to two golf rounds). Sun worship comes more easily to Liz than water slides. Troy's wallet was an early casualty, but turned up before week's end.
15: Did you take it, yet?
17: Mary felt more comfortable on the back of JP's scooter (and who wouldn't!?), but was a trooper riding on her own as well. They snorkeled together at five or six beaches and in front of our house. They explored the island end to end, including stops at the botanical gardens, the Crystal Caves (worth a miss), a drive-by of the Swizzle Inn (reported to be a favorite of Poppa's dad, Buppa), and finally St. George's, where despite best laid plans, they missed the ferry home (it left early!). Alas, that allowed one more snorkel adventure at Horseshoe beach (top right).
18: We remember well Kimmy and Dan's amazing chicken dinner when it was their turn to cook. Dan (a.k.a. Evel Knievel) came closest to the Bermuda emergency room for scooter mishaps. Paging Kimmy to drive Grama Denny.
19: Henry's on line one! | You can't be too careful on the beach. Helmets are the new rage!
20: Thanks so much for bringing us to such a special place to mark your 50th!! | Relaxing on the back veranda (left); before anniversary dinner at the Reefs (above)
21: Site of memories of Mom and Dad and many of their friends, Lantana (above) had fallen on hard times; condos were being built; we also stopped by the Wreck Road (Sandys Parish) house and reminisced about our 1997 visit.
22: All great vacations come to an end. We enjoyed our final night of cocktails and dinner. Maybe an 80th birthday return?
23: After another memorable dinner overlooking Bermuda's Great Sound, Dad gives "awards" ranging from "daredevil Dan" to "Marco Polo Troy," with highest marks to Liz and Kimmy for creativity in gift creation. Dad deserved one for being our beloved patriarch.
24: Mom and Dad, Liz and Troy head for the airport for an earlier flight than the rest. Mary and JP hit the Dockyard (left). | One last trip to Whale Beach. | Mary considers buying and shipping her scooter back to San Francisco (not!); waiting for our taxi (above)