Best Selling Author Gail Pallotta Shares a Favorite Vacation Memory!
Staying Somewhere on Ocracoke
From one vacation to the next my father dreamed of beaches. We knew he’d head to our destination like he had it on missile lock. When he awakened us at three o’clock in the morning the day we left, we dressed comfortably in shorts. My two younger sisters sported raccoon type circles under their eyes. Grandma’s thinning white hair frizzed, and my good-natured grandfather, completely bald at sixty-eight, donned an undershirt with Bermuda shorts. We shot out to the car, left our home at the foothills of the North Carolina Mountains, and stopped only a few times. We even combined our lunch of crackers with a gas station break. Daylight waned when we reached the ferry to take us to Ocracoke. Father drove the car onto it, and we tumbled out and stretched our legs.
“Ah, this is the life.” Father clasped his hands behind his neck, leaned backward and took a deep breath. “Smell that sea air.”
Mother turned toward him. “Where did you say we were staying?”
“Somewhere on Ocracoke.”
My mother’s brow wrinkled into a deep frown. “You did make reservations, didn’t you?”
“No, very few people vacation here. There’s no demand for rooms.”
My mother gasped, and the horror I saw on her face chilled my tired bones. However, in minutes we piled in the car and drove off the ferry. It appeared Father was right. High, sandy dunes lined the highways, scrub brush dotting the sides of it. Miles of blue ocean lay on either side of us. In the distance, a lighthouse, the only sign of life, loomed like a lonely skyscraper. Three small, light brown ponies galloped onto the stretch of beach between the dunes and the waves rolling to our right. We past the next large mound, and there it sat—a traditional two story house with only one parking space left. Father slammed on his brakes and pulled in it.
Mother leaned forward and peered out the windshield. “I hope we can get a room.”
“Oh, I’m sure we can.” Father hopped out of the car and charged into the building with us following.
By the time I entered the foyer he’d disappeared down a long hallway. My grandmother ran her hand on the intricate wall paneling. “Only a fancy hotel would have woodwork this fine. I bet we’re not dressed to be here.”
Mother fanned her face. “It’s nice, but they don’t seem to have air conditioning.” She sighed. “Well, I guess we won’t complain about that. We’re lucky to find somewhere out here in this isolated place with no reservations. What’s keeping him anyway?” She proceeded down the hall with us behind her.
We walked into a large dining room. People wearing long gowns and tuxedoes seated at an elongated table unfolded white linen napkins.
Grandma cut her dark brown eyes at Mother. “I told you we weren’t dressed for this fancy hotel.”
One of the men rose from his seat and strolled to us.
“Do you have any rooms left?” Father’s usual steady, almost stern voice, sounded weak.
“I’m sorry, sir. This is a private home. We’ve just seated our guests for dinner. Let me escort you to the entrance.”
Learn more about Gail and her books on her web site
Check out Gail's recent novel!
Jack Greenthumb finds romance in Fairwilde Kingdom—a different day—a different girl. Then a cruel mystery begins. Dad’s beaten, the family farm destroyed and Jack’s true love, Gwendolyn Bante, kidnapped. Jack’s undercover operation reveals Gwenie’s a captive atop a mountain accessible only by helicopter. Reaching her is a dangerous expedition even for a champion rock climber like Jack. However, a Greenthumb Acres employee plants a miraculous seed from Heaven for the rescue. Suspense mounts as Jack scales the perilous cliff to face a brute and a treacherous descent in this retelling of the fairy tale, Jack and the Beanstalk.
A Little About Gail~~
Award-winning author Gail Pallotta’s a wife, Mom, swimmer and bargain shopper who loves God, beach sunsets and getting together with friends and family. She’s been a Sunday school teacher, a swim-team coordinator and an after-school literary instructor. A former regional writer of the year for American Christian Writers Association, she won Clash of the Titles in 2010. Her teen book, Stopped Cold, was a best-seller on All Romance eBooks, finished fourth in the Preditors and Editors readers’ poll, and was a finalist for the 2013 Grace Awards. She’s published short stories in “Splickety” magazine and Sweet Freedom with a Slice of Peach Cobbler. Some of her published articles appear in anthologies while two are in museums. Coming soon: Barely above Water from Prism Book Group. Visit Gail’s web site at http://www.gailpallotta.com.