Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Ocean City, NJ, Part 6

Getting online has been very difficult here and we have had to resort to using the available wifi bandwidth either late at night or early in the morning. Some of the choice photos and videos I had intended to post will have to repose in Picasa and my IPhoto Library for the time being.

Yesterday morning we biked to Goofy Golf on the boardwalk and played a round of miniature golf with the girls. It was extremely hot and sunny even at 9:30 a.m. when we began. After we biked home and rested, we changed and went to the beach for a few hours while Alex went to the gym. This time, because of the later hour, we packed a picnic lunch and ate at the beach. After napping we had intended to have dinner at The Crab Trap in Somers Point, which is right over the Ninth Street Bridge. The bridge was closed to traffic when we arrived and we used our trusty navigator to negotiate another route which took us over a bridge at about 34th Street. When we arrived at the restaurant at around 7:30 p.m. we were told to check back with the receptionist in 20 minutes for a beeper and that once we received one, the wait would be about an hour and 15 minutes. Back in the car again with our trusty navigator, we programmed in "nearest available Japanese restaurant" to locate a sushi restaurant in Margate that Ari had researched for us a few days ago. It was only 5 miles away and had a table for six available. Within 20 minutes, we found ourselves seated around a hibachi table in a lovely Japanese restaurant named Mikado. We had edamame, miso soup, seaweed salad and iced green tea. Then, the chef came and performed the usual hibachi tricks such as the "egg in the pocket," "flaming onion volcano," knife juggling, etc. while preparing a teriyaki salmon with rice and veggies for us. I have embedded a YouTube video for those of you who have never experienced this type of restaurant. The chef in this video is a champion and has quite a bag of tricks. We never thought to video our own experience.

Then we were presented with a huge wooden boat artfully arranged with the sushi we had ordered (including lots of bubbles, salmon caviar, for Izzy). Dessert was warm banana tempura with scoops of red bean and vanilla ice cream. The bill was incredibly reasonable compared to our usual sushi feasts at home. Ari always says we have great travel karma. Apparently, the karma is there even when Ari is not. May it always be so! The restaurant was just down the street from Lucy, the elephant-shaped hotel where we used to go to the beach when I was a child. Of course, we took the kids to see it. It has been restored beautifully and looked much nicer than it did in my childhood.

Today, we biked early and went to the beach early. Lunch was cleaning up various leftovers in preparation for the end of our vacation. While Saul, the girls and I napped, Jess and Alex went for a walk and picked up new sunglasses for Izzy who has outgrown last year's pair. They also went to Jake's, answered the trivia question and had water ice. Tonight, we were determined to have dinner early before the crowds. We awoke, dressed, and Saul drove us over to Ma France Creperie on 9th Street next to the Chatterbox. We have severely taxed his knees with all the biking and walking. Again, our travel karma held. The restaurant was quaint and attractive and we were seated at a banquette in the window where the girls reclined on plush pillows. The kitchen was open and we were invited in with the girls to watch the owner prepare our dinners. As it turned out, the owner was born and raised in France and lived in Israel for many years, so she spoke both languages fluently. In the course of the conversation, it also turned out that her French-speaking cousin lives right across the street from the Wellwood International Elementary School that Sami attends in Pikesville, where they are always looking for French-speaking substitutes. Jessica had a phone conversation in the kitchen on the owner's phone with the owner's cousin. Among the dishes we ordered and loved were a vegetarian-based French onion soup; mushroom and swiss cheese buckwheat crepes; apple, fig and brie buckwheat crepes drizzled with honey; mont blanc (chestnut puree) crepes with house-made whipped cream; and caramelized banana crepes with ice cream. The salads were huge and the iced coffee delicious. We guessed at the Israeli connection from the beginning because they had a mint-flavored lemonade called "lemonana." Nana is the Hebrew word for spearmint and is commonly served as a tea infusion in Israel.

We walked a few blocks down to Pirate's Cove while Saul drove and parked right next to the amusement park and joined us. On the way, we finally saw Mr. Peanut, for whom we had been looking all week, and the girls posed for a picture with him. We used up our remaining ride tickets to the girls' delight on the ferris wheel, tilt-a-whirl, roller coasters, etc. Alex spent some money at an arcade to win a stuffed car toy for Izzy and a Kung Fu Panda for Sami. Saul drove us home and after tucking the girl's into bed, we babysat while Jess and Alex went out for the rest of the evening.


Ari said...

"Apparently, the karma is there even when Ari is not. May it always be so!"

Gee, I don't quite know how to take that... :)

In any case, I feel compelled to claim SOME of the karma credit for recommending the place to you last week in the first place.

baenigma said...

Thought you would be interested to know that Brenna picked names for her hermit crabs. They are Sami and Izzy. Really.