Monday, July 18, 2011

A Day In A Life

It’s a gorgeous, hot Sunday, the kind that lends itself to, what else, a trip to the beach.

A call from my sister-in-law Wendi, and plans are laid.  With sunscreen and bathing suits on, cooler and Barbeque packed, in no time we are on our way. My husband Mark, daughter Stephie, Stephie’s boyfriend, Jesse, and I meet up with Wendi and her son Lucas near the Bible Hill overpass to begin our trip to –my favorite - Melmerby Beach.

The worst part of the trip is the drive. When you’re hot, and anxious to immerse yourself in the refreshing, invigorating, salty waves, it seems too long, but definitely worth the wait.

Finding a spot on the sand for our blankets is the next task; as close to the water as possible, without blocking other’s view. Unfold with the wind, and down to spread perfectly. A little sand over the corners and the wind is not a problem.

I’m not a sunbather, so sandals, hat and sunglasses off, and into the water I go.  Brrrr. But the best way to get used to it is dive right in…so I do. Brisk! But it doesn’t take long to get used to it, and the waves are beautiful and bouncy. I swim out a bit, and then flip over onto my back. Ahhh, it feels like home as the water flows over and around me - I’m sure I must have been a dolphin or an otter in a previous life. I look around and see only a handful of people in the water. I can’t understand why anyone would come to the beach and never get into the water. That’s my whole reason to be here. I catch a few waves and body surf in, but most of them are the bouncy kind, and that’s alright, I’m just happy to be here.

I decide to get out of the water for awhile, as the rest of the members of my crew were already drying on the blankets. I reapply my sunscreen, cover up, don my hat and sunglasses and take pictures as Lucas and Jesse dig a hole, then proceed to bury Lucas up to his shoulders in sand. The sand is wet and heavy, so Lucas has to struggle to make his way out, but he does, and now it’s time for another dip.

Not everyone likes to stay in the water as long as me, so in the end, I’m out here by myself, loving the water and drifting with the waves. I finally decide it’s time to get out, as my hands are starting to get a little stiff from the cold, so I look to the shore for sight of our blanket. Um….After swimming out and drifting sideways, and finding myself somewhat blind without my glasses, I don’t recognize any familiar shapes on the beach. So, I climb onto the shore and walk uncomfortably close to various beach goers in search of my family. Meanwhile, they are watching me, slightly amused, as I wander, lost, across the sand, reminiscent of my parking lot car searches at the mall – I’m so glad I offer such amusement. I finally spot Stephie’s pink hat, and she waves. They all chuckle as I take my seat on the blanket.

After one last swim we decide to move on up to Powell’s Point Park for our barbeque picnic. Hot dogs and salad followed by a stroll through the woods, down to the water to take in the view, a few pictures and then we’re on our way.

We drop Jesse at the Highland Mall before heading home. I turn, and through the haze, I see the wind turbines atop Mount Thom, slowly turning - I guess it’s too hot for even the turbines to rush.

We wave to Wendi and Lucas as they take the off ramp to Bible Hill, and we continue home. I feel tired, but it’s a good tired.

Today was a great day.


  1. Hi Shannon,
    I'm glad to see you are enjoying yourself this summer. I've been to the beach a few times myself. I know a lot of us are nervous about being out in the sun, but lots of sunscreen, coverups, umbrellas and hats should keep us safe. My vacation is over and I'm back to work, but still sneak a quick beach trip every now and then. Cheers, Carolyn

  2. Hi Carolyn,
    I'm glad you're not totally hibernating this summer. I did my first couple of summers after melanoma. Take precautions, respect the sun, but don't forget to live your life. For me, life wouldn't be worth living if I couldn't get to the beach at least a few times each summer. I'm afraid now I'm going to have to hold off on swimming for awhile, as I'm going tomorrow to get a couple more moles removed. Fingers crossed.