A day at the beach

I suppose all beach pictures are the same, in a way. You have the water and the sand, and that lovely gradient where they meet. You have the bright sky and the white foam against which are captured the various silhouettes of the Typical Beach-Goer: the Sand Digger, the Wave-Leaper (and his counterpart, the Wave-Flee-er), the Brave Toe-Dipper, and so forth. I guess I've taken thousands of variations on these pictures over the years, and appeared in my share of them as a child. But to me, they aren't all the same. Or maybe more accurately: their very sameness makes me realize how quickly things change. And how fast the years go in and out and wash away: as fleeting as those waves edging up the shoreline.

Well. Those are solemn thoughts for what was, in fact, a very typical day at the beach: as typical as a beach day CAN be for sea-thirsty, land-locked desert-dwellers like us, anyway. We were there visiting my brother's family while Sam did a workshop in Irvine, but that was still to come. Today, there was sand in all the hair and all the noses and all the ears. There was sand in the crackers and grapes and cheese. There were sunburned noses and babies in hats. There were gentlemanly arms around shoulders, and unladylike squeals of terror. And it was all perfect.
We rode the car ferry across to the peninsula. It was so cool!
A seal was walking around on the sand.
Daisy and Ben in their now-familiar boogie board pose.

Awaiting the next wave.
Teddy found these sunglasses, to his lasting delight.
Goldie fell off the swing at my brother's house the first day we were there, so she had a bruised cheek and lip for several days. I thought it just gave her a cute little rosy look.
She was quite a brave little explorer this time, content to navigate the border of waves and sand on her own…as long as the water didn't get TOO close. It was nice to have her out of the "inquisitive baby oblivious of the ocean" stage. And she loved wave-jumping while safely clamped onto someone's steadying hand.
So many little secret games children play with the water. I don't know what any of them mean. 'Twas ever thus.
Teddy was VERY NERVOUS about the ocean, which was funny because we had gone swimming at the pool the day before, and he'd gotten past his initial nervousness about that and had a great time. And when we got to the beach, he was completely happy playing in the sand, and no one made him go nearer the water than he wanted to. But for the remainder of our trip, every time we got into the car he said in a bright but terrified voice, "I love the ocean! We won't go in the ocean! We aren't going to the ocean right now! We don't get in the water! It's so fun!" (Poor conflicted child.) Anyway, he did QUITE like sitting on this little beach chair. 
And digging in the sand!
Poor bodyless Daisy!
Philip is universally loved by my babies. They all want to sit on his lap.
Curly Junie beach-hair
Eh. I've seen sandier.
Love those little starfish-hands!
Teddy contemplating the frailty of human life. Note placement of symbolically-overturned bucket in foreground.
Still at it four hours later. Those two are the best little beach friends!
Or course it came to an end at last, as all good things must. Everyone was sleepy and sandy on the way home, and there was much hair-washing in our future…but for these few sun-drenched hours we  were totally at peace and content, the way one can't help but be content at the beach, watching the water fall and rise and hearing the roar of it our ears. 
And last of all, here's Daisy by the jasmine when we got back to Philip and Allison's house. What I REALLY wanted to record here was the SMELL! So heavenly. Why hasn't someone invented a scent-camera yet?

1 comment

  1. Sand in the grapes and sand in the crackers. Always always. And those bright little yellow swimsuits! And those found sunglasses . . . oh how I hope they simply stayed on him. Or he's of an age to keep putting them on again himself. Because I think we've discussed before the misery sunglasses can be. I dread Mette finding a pair -- the never staying on, the sobbing to have them back on over and over. And in the end, that last picture of Daisy by the jasmine. I could almost feel again all of that -- the sandy sun-stiff skin, the traces of sunblock, the coolness of being out of the sun and back home in the shade and around something blooming, etc etc.


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