May 17, 2015

MARY-LAND of Adventure-Cari Marsi

Let’s get the Maryland stats out of the way before we get to the fun stuff.
Maryland consists of 12,193 miles, ranks 42nd in the nation and includes the Chesapeake Bay, America’s largest estuary (source: Maryland Geological Survey) Chesapeake Bay is 185 miles long, 30 miles wide at its widest, 174 feet deep at its deepest and holds 18 trillion gallons of water.
Maryland has 9,844 square miles of land, 623.35 square miles of inland water, 31 miles of Atlantic Ocean coast, including Assateague Island, almost 4,000 miles of shoreline, 400 lakes, all man made.
Now for the fun stuff.

For a small state, Maryland is big in resources with lots to see and do. I live in the neighboring state of Delaware. Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia make up the Delmarva Peninsula. Because the states on the East Coast are small and close to each other, travel between them is easy. Visiting Maryland, for me, is like traveling to another part of my state. 

Maryland has a great beach—Ocean City—situated along the Atlantic
coast just south of the Delaware beaches. The soft, white sand and the long boardwalk make Ocean City a popular destination. Although Ocean City is a tad too built up for my taste, with a proliferation of high-rise hotels, it’s a fun place, always awake and exciting during the summer months.

Then there’s Baltimore, a gritty urban city with a kind of downhome flavor. Inner Harbor is close to downtown Baltimore, and a bit touristy, but very pretty, especially in summer. Inner Harbor has an abundance of terrific restaurants, a world-class aquarium, and good shopping. If you’re looking for something with a little more edge, visit Fell’s Point, a gentrified, trendy area near Inner Harbor. I once stayed at an inn there called Admiral Fell Inn. The name still makes me chuckle.

Annapolis, home of the U.S. Naval Academy, is a quaint little town filled with bars and restaurants, and some cool shops too. My husband and I once spent a weekend there on a friend’s sailboat. Finding a spot to dock your boat is easier than finding a parking spot for your car. When in Annapolis, go to Middleton Tavern, established 1750, and try their oyster shooters. For me, it’s worth making the one hundred mile trip just to have a few oyster shooters.
A nephew attended the Naval Academy. For four years, I dreamed of attending his graduation and seeing all those hats flying in the air. Graduation day arrived, in the middle of a week-long deluge that wouldn’t stop. We sat in the stands wrapped in garbage bags made into rain gear. It was awful, and to make it worse, the graduates couldn’t toss their hats. 

St. Michael’s, Maryland, derives its name from the Episcopal Parish established in 1677. It’s a fun town with quirky shops and restaurants, perfect for a summer day excursion. On a weekend trip there with a group of boaters, we took over an inn. Great food, lots of wine. My husband and I aren’t boaters, but we were
friends with people who owned boats. Those boaters know how to party!

I’ve enjoyed Maryland through the years, but the best trip there was one that was unplanned. The road less traveled can be the richest. Some time ago, my husband, son, and I took a road trip through Maryland and
West Virginia, with no particular destination in mind. It soon turned into a Civil War Battlefield journey. We stayed overnight in Hagerstown and visited Antietam, site of the bloodiest single day of war in U.S. history.

During the Civil War, Maryland was a border state with split loyalties (as was Delaware). The infamous Battle of Antietam took place Wednesday, September 17, 1862, at Antietam Creek in Sharpsburg,
Washington County. The combined forces at Antietam totaled just over 114,000, of which 22,717 either died, were wounded, or were lost.

The men who fell at Antietam that day haunt the battlefield, just as the dead haunt Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, which we’ve visited several times. The indentation for the ditch at Antietam where so many died is still there. Walking through Antietam, I could feel the spirits of the brave men who gave their lives that day. The feeling got stronger at the ditch. I get chills even now thinking about it. There are a total of seven Civil War battlefields in Maryland, but Antietam is the most famous, the most deadly, and the most haunted. We visited other battlefields on that trip, but the haunting sadness of Antietam has never left me.

Visit Maryland and enjoy all it offers. Their crab cakes are without equal. Fresh seafood is abundant on its Eastern Shore. Swim in the ocean and take in the night life of Ocean City. Shop in the quaint towns and explore its rich history, especially the Civil War battlefields.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this little excursion through Maryland. 

 As a thank you for visiting Fifty Authors from Fifty States, a giveaway!!

June, the month of weddings, is near. To celebrate, I’m giving away a print, autographed copy of the bestselling anthology, The Marriage Coin Boxed Set, to one commenter chosen at random. Don’t forget to leave your email address.

“Flowers make the perfume of love stronger.” 

A mysterious coin is passed down through the centuries to those deserving of Luck and Love. Five couples in different eras each come into possession of the coin and enter into a marriage-of-convenience. Will the coin lead them to love as well as luck?
Five original sweet romance novellas by three award-winning authors and two talented debut authors. 
Violet-Any Earl Will Do by Gwendolyn Schuler 
Lilly-The Bronze Talisman by Martha Schroeder 
Rose-The Power of Hope by Kate Welsh 
Poppy-Her Forever Husband by Cara Marsi 
Dahlia-A Gypsy’s Flower by Daria Grady
Cara Marsi, an award-winning author and self-proclaimed TV junkie, is a former corporate drone and cubicle dweller. Freed from her fabric-covered cage, she can now indulge her love of all things romance. She craves books with happy endings and loves to write about independent heroines and the strong heroes who love them. And she loves to put her characters in dangerous situations or situations merely dangerous to their hearts and watch them fight for the happy endings they deserve.

An eclectic author, Cara is published in romantic suspense, paranormal romance, and contemporary romance. She has also published numerous short romance stories in national women’s magazines and online. When not traveling or dreaming of traveling, Cara and her husband live on the East Coast in a house ruled by a sweet, formerly homeless cat named Tortie and a fat black diva of a cat named Killer.

Find out more about me, and my author life, and sign up for my newsletter here:


  1. Cara, I enjoyed your blog today. It was fun to learn more about Maryland. I lived in Waldorf briefly when my husband was on a consulting job at Brandywine and we visited some of the places you mention. I am sorry we didn't have the opportunity to visit the Civil War sites you described as the CW is the subject of my own book of my heart. Your book giveaway sounds great. I'd love to be the winner! I wish you continued success with all of your books.

  2. Cara, with all the bad press Maryland has been bombarded with, it's great reading your article about a favorite state of mine. My wife Sharon's sister lives in Hancock, MD, and visit her occasionally.

  3. Thank you, Linda and Salvatore. And thank you, Annette, for having me. It's true that with the bad press MD has gotten recently, we need to remember all that's good in that state. Linda, I hope you get to see Antietam.

  4. Your post brought back lots of fond memories of growing up in Maryland. It is a beautiful state, rich with history and activities. Thank you for sharing this interesting information and best of luck with your writing!

  5. In my mind, Maryland will always be the state of challenge. The challenge of balancing the blight and corruption of Baltimore with the beauty of the rest of the state. The challenge of taking care of the ecology, especially the Chesapeake Bay, in the face of massive industry. The challenge of maintaining its identity as a state against the bedroom encroachment of Washington, and of course the historical challenge during the 1860s of remaining in the union despite the great Southern sentiment.

  6. AnonymousMay 17, 2015

    Cara, I enjoyed your post on Maryland. I also enjoy your books very much!
    Thank you
    Karen Komarinski

  7. One of my favorite small states. Absolutely right about the parking situation in Annapolis. Oh, and if you visit, don't forget about the mountains in the northwest part of the state.

  8. I went to Baltimore quite a few years ago with my son who was there for an Anime conference. :)

    It was a beautiful town with the cobblestone streets. I loved seeing the history right in front of my eyes.

    All the best!

  9. Thanks, Debbie. It is a beautiful state.

    Ken, very well said.

    Thanks, Karen. And thanks for liking my books. I appreciate it.

    JR, I was in the western part of the state once and was surprised to see mountains.

    Melissa, despite the bad situation in Baltimore recently, it has a lot of history and is a unique city.

  10. Cara, thanks for the blog about MD. My publisher and writing group member live near Baltimore so I'm there often from my NC home, but I enjoyed reading the history. It's a lovely area, for sure! We've done the Poe Museum, visited the Harbor area, including Martha Grimes' The Horse You Came in On Saloon, and hope this year to get to the Peabody Library. I've passed the ocean area, too. Now your story has me itching to see St. Michaels!
    Marni Graff:

  11. Thanks for this interesting and informative post. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  12. Hi, Marni. Thanks for visiting. You're right that there's a lot of history in MD. St. Micheal's is very cool. Hope you get a chance to visit.

    Traveler, thanks for visiting.

  13. I enjoyed your blog and your book sounds wonderful. I drove through Maryland last month. It's always beautiful in the spring.


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