November 15, 2015

off season at the beach

We've been fortunate to be able to travel during the off season when it's mostly quiet and less crowded even at the most touristy destinations. There had been times when we had to deal with unpredictable weather, change of plans and minor inconveniences but we've learned to make the most out of every situation. This past week, we were happy and excited to stay by the beach with my mother-in-law who flew in to join us. The weather may not be as perfect but it never stopped us from enjoying our long walks along the deserted beach, as shown below.

Despite occasional heavy downpours and unexpected red flag warnings at the beach, there were also days when we were rewarded with moments like this...

...when dark clouds opened up to reveal bright blue skies, we were reminded how breathtaking it could be after the rain. 

One of the highlights of our stay was watching the spectacular sunsets from the condo veranda, shown above.

We saw a few rays, like the one shown above, along the shore. Just like us, this one seemed to be enjoying the calm season while relaxing undisturbed on a quiet morning at the beach.

The view from the 14th floor condo unit veranda, above. Every vacation we took always gave us a chance to try local restaurants, starting off with some memorable breakfast treats, as shown below. 

Eggs Benedict, sweet Sicilian oranges with a splash of olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper, capuccino and cherry mousse crepes at Mama Clemenza's European Breakfast place.

It was our first time at a local diner where we tried grilled mahi salad and the classic burgers with fries and we were not disappointed. At Mimmo's Italian restaurant, the antipasto platter and creamy chicken Marsala were both memorable and worth another visit. 

At Cultivate Cafe, serving mostly vegetarian farm to table specialties, I enjoyed the chef salad with sliced apples, roasted beets and sweet potato. Tossed with grapefruit vinaigrette, it was just the perfect light and refreshing lunch for me. My husband's green curry with quinoa and garbanzo beans was also tasty and filling.

Our sushi and sashimi love boat serving, shown above, at Shan Kishi Japanese restaurant. We were surprised to see how big their wood serving boat was :-) filled with all the neatly arranged rolls and sushi. Every now and then, we crave this beautiful presentation and fresh combination of flavors. 

On our last day, we returned to Mama Clemenza's just so we could try other items in their breakfast menu. As I've always preferred sweet than savory for breakfast most of the time, the orange suzette pancakes were my immediate choice. Mom-in-law ordered these cheese blintzes, which looked lovely and colorful with fresh fruit. I had to ask her to take this beautiful picture for me :-) It was a relaxing week for us thanks to my husband who made this fun vacation possible for us to enjoy!

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