road trip 2012 | baltimore

I love saving holidays for summer's end. The warmer months here in Montreal are just so glorious and decadent that I don't really feel the need to leave to relax. After a busy day, meeting up with some friends, a bottle of wine, and a picnic blanket in my neighbourhood park usually unwinds things like a charm.

This year has been a bit different than the past few, however, in that I've begun working virtually around the clock. For the first time in a while I started feeling really restless and longing to leave my computer behind. I found my thoughts being infiltrated by visions of southern cities and long stretches of road in between.

We planned a trip around visit to my grandparents, who have lived in and around Atlanta for my whole life. We decided to break up the drive with stops in a few different cities along the way. The first stop south of the Mason-Dixon Line was Baltimore, a city I've wanted to visit since Brian went a few years back and, yes, since watching The Wire.

After a nine hour drive, we arrived in Charm City on a sunny afternoon.

And charming it was! Minutes after sitting down to our first drink at The Sidebar, the bartender began chatting with us and volunteering all sorts of recommendations, almost all of which we followed. But first, we started by just walking around the city.

We stopped in at the Wharf Rat, a Fells Point pub run by Canadians, for a pre-dinner drink and soaked up the cozy atmosphere.

We had dinner at the Thames Street Oyster House, which had a really fresh raw bar (including oyster shots in beer, served in a glass rimmed with Old Bay) and the best scallops I've ever tasted. Most notably, the service was so quick and amazing.

And then, after a quick scotch and some classical music at Birds of a Feather, we retired for the night. After all, we had another full day of driving ahead of us!

Next up: Charleston.