Rather than think of myself as an unemployed bum who’s sponging off the good graces of friends, I’d like to think I’m a writer who is experiencing life and telling stories that will make people smile, think, or be entertained for years to come. Unfortunately that job doesn’t pay well. But until a paycheck does come along, I’ll be bringing you the continuing adventures of a girl on the road.

Next stop, North Carolina. In particular, the Outer Banks. I am fortunate enough to have a wonderful friend, Wendy, who invited me to spend the week with her awesome family in a big nice house in Corolla. It was tough, believe me, to decide whether or not to go to the beach that had soft sand, cool breezes, and a warm ocean, or to hang out by the pool next to the house then later soak in the hot tub while Wendy makes us pina coladas. Seriously, I hate having to make decisions when I’m on vacation.

The trip down was fun and once I crossed into Carolina was peppered with some in-your-face marketing by the local farmer’s markets who were trying to outdo each other. First was the Powell market with their farmer guy signs. Then came the Morris market with their tractors lining the road. Finally there was the Grandy market. Grandy’s had the most juicy, wonderful peaches I’ve ever tasted.

Along the way, I kept seeing signs that said NO OLF. I was intrigued until I looked it up and found out it meant North Carolinians Opposing the Outlying Landing Field. I’m sure it’s an important issue but let’s be honest, I know you would much rather read the interviews I conducted with the new little friends I made in the OBX than read about NO OLF. These kids are all part of Wendy’s family and each one was really cute and lots of fun. Someday I’m sure they’ll turn out to be superstars, lawyers, card sharks, or engineers. So here they are.

Dawn: What’s your favorite thing about the Outer Banks?

Natalie, age 10: I like going to the beach and going into the ocean and boogie boarding.

Kirsten, age 10: I like going on walks and looking at sea shells. I collect smooth ones and clearish rocks and store them in a baggy that used to be my hair stuff bag.

Katie, age 6: (After her father told her not to say “watch TV”, she responded), I like jumping waves and going out really far. According to Kirsten, she likes to sing on the toilet (but I guess I wasn’t supposed to share that).

Logan, age 9: I like to go out far where the sharks are. I also like digging in the sand and going to the pool.

Kyle, age 8: I like to make domino trails. I made one with 136 dominoes and Logan and I made one with 227—on two stories.

Dawn: What’s been your all-time favorite thing you’ve ever done in the Outer Banks?

Natalie: We made t-shirts with carrots. (Clarification for those who are in the state of saying, huh? The t-shirts were painted using carrots as paint brushes.)

Kirsten: Going to the lighthouse was the funnest thing I’ve ever done.

Katie: Playing in the Newcomb tournament.

Logan: We went crabbing and I caught a six inch crab and gave it to someone who had a bucket.

Kyle: I liked swimming in the pool when it was raining because you can get wet when you’re out of the pool, and I love to swim.

Dawn: Tell me something interesting about yourself. What makes you special?

Natalie: I can fake burps by swallowing air and letting it out.

Kirsten: I’m a ballet dancer and was in four shows in dance theatre PA. (Detop.)

Katie: I’m a really good softball player. I play random positions but like second.

Logan: I can do ear farts.

Kyle: I’m a baseball pitcher. Our team won the championships the last two years. I’m also really good at swimming and video games.

Natalie and Katie are from a town called Perkasie, which according to the Web site is Bucks County’s hidden gem. Natalie tells me it has an airport and while on recess she watches people skydiving. Kirsten and Kyle are from a town called Plumsteadville. I’m not making this up people. I used to hang out at a place called the Plumstead Inn in Media, PA, with my friend Andy Bumstead, but I digress. I looked it up and there’s a Web site that has the Plumsteadville news. The topic of one of the discussion threads was “Purse found at Doylestown shopping centre.” Logan is from Newark, DE, home of the fighting Blue Hens.

But back to North Carolina. I love the OBX. Among other things, it’s home to where the Wright brothers took their first flight and also to a great little eatery called the Tortugas’ Lie. Wendy and I had a yummy lunch there. She got a beer called “Skinny Dip” and I got a drink that came with a plastic shark. Thanks for the fun folks—now it’s on to Michigan!