Friday, June 24, 2016

Touring on Two Wheels: A Dream Drive Along the Bay

"The bicycle, the bicycle surely, should always be the vehicle of novelists and poets." ~ Christopher Morley

One of my favorite outdoor activities at The Grand Hotel, in Point Clear, Ala., is bicycling. Gliding through the resort -- feeling the sun on my face and the coastal breezes whipping through my hair -- makes me feel like a child again. One afternoon during our recent stay, the girls and I ventured off the property for a look at some of the local scenery. I paused along our route to photograph some of our favorite waterfront homes.

These gracious Southern abodes had us dreaming of living along the coast. Lush green lawns framed by picket fences gave way to stretches of sandy beaches just beyond their borders.

Can you imagine waking up to this view each day?

This brick charmer was one of the first that caught our attention.

Relaxing with a tall glass of lemonade in the shade of this front porch sounds like a lovely way to while away the hottest hours of a mid-June day.

And wouldn't it be lovely to recline on this screened-in porch as daylight fades into evening?

Along our path, we passed other families on bicycles, girlfriends pushing a baby carriage, and a father helping his toddler walk across the pier.

In this lovely setting, I couldn't help but wonder about the many generations who have gathered along these shores.

I imagine a son beaming as he introduces his future bride to the family -- a bashful smile beneath the brim of her sun hat highlighting delicate features as she offers a bouquet to her beloved's grandmother. As the summers pass, this couple brings infants who grow into children who before they know it come home from college with fiancees shyly bringing their own fresh-cut flowers.

"This one is mine," Emma declared to a pedestrian out walking her dog.

"We're dreaming," I explained. It turns out that the woman lives nearby, and she promised to tell the couple who own this home how much we admire it. 

Cheery yellow awnings, a wide screened-in porch, and a bicycle parked out front give this property a welcoming ambience.

Toward the end of our trek, we encountered a cluster of homes that included some new construction. I hope these cottages will be filled with happy memories of summertime bliss.

Golden moments shared between loved ones.

Priceless gifts among the treasures of sun, sand and sea.

"It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best ... ." ~ Ernest Hemingway

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