a day at the beach

Last week my Okole Po'o G and I went to the beach. On a Thursday. Because we could. (Both of us waiting for our new jobs to start.) And it was just like old times.

We've been going to the beaches together for over 20 years. We love the ocean, but have a special place in our hearts for lakes. We grew up in a smallish town near several beautiful lakes. One in particular served as our home base for many hot summers.

Her parents owned a sail boat, so she grew up on the water and at the marina. My family would spend many summer days at the other beach, from sunrise to sunset (breakfast on a grill is divine!), not leaving til the park rangers finally closed things up.

When we met in high school we would go to the lake our friends for a day of baking in the hot valley sun. Now and then we'd swim out to "the Green Thing" or to the ropes, but mostly we just laid in the sun and read and napped and watched lifeguards. The fragrance of Coppertone sunscreen (for me) and coco butter tanning oil (for her) would mingle with the scent of barbecues and the snack bar fryer to create this intoxicating aroma that just said SUMMER to me.

As we transitioned from high school to the local community college, our adventures broadened. We go sailing with her folks. We tried sailboarding a few times, but didn't manage to do much other than write a goofy song. We camped at one of the lake campgrounds. We kept "beach bags" in our car with all our supplies, so that we could head to the lake at a moments notice. And one year we got jobs in the marina store and the snack bar.

That was a great summer! In the morning we would drive her little baby blue Kharmann Gia the long, twisty road to the lake, singing along with the oldies station. We'd work and oggle the sailors or lifeguards. At lunch we'd lounge and swim. At the end of the day, we'd drive the twisty road all the way out to the community college theater where we were both doing summerstock. We'd stay up way too late running lines, sewing costumes, building sets, and setting up sound and lights -- geeking out with our dorky theater friends. We'd finish most days up at a Denny's. Moons over my Hammy, baby!

The whole summer was a blur of sunscreen and Shakespeare and friendship. That great feeling of weightlessness before the trials of adulthood descended. The closest I ever came to the surf lifestyle.

So last week, it felt perfect to lay next to my friend on a blanket in the sun. Credence played on the little radio. We slathered ourselves in sunscreen and tanning oil. We ate chips and talked about boys. We took naps and read, the scent of barbecue wafting over us...

I could feel the ghosts of summers past, in that lovely afternoon with my friend. Perfect.


tuesdaybook - front porch (redux, part 2, again)

Seeing... Sunlight through the maple leaves; sunny yellow blossoms on the potted plant on my porch; and the tiniest tinge of pink in the blossoms of my green hydrangeas; a delicious blue summer sky

Hearing... The clatter of dishes as my neighbors enjoy breakfast, chatting with their smart English accents; a distant lawn mower; the twitter of tiny birds in the palm trees next door

Wearing... old jeans and my favorite red sweatshirt (a theme for these days)

Tasting... delicious ceylon tea from our beloved tea shop that is no more :(

Creating... fun pillowcases for my man and maybe some for me too

Working... on getting my name changed - today, get the authorized copy of the marriage certificate - tomorrow, a day of big fun at the social security office - Thursday, another day of happy fun times at the DMV - Friday (hopefully), fill out paperwork for my new job, and change my name with all insurance agencies...

Pondering... the deep healing that needs to occur in my soul, the progress made so far, and what I can do to facilitate it all; what rhythms MM and I need to develop, so that we can do the things that are important to us (make music, write stories, fence/dance/adventure, learn Italian, cook our way through cultures of the world...); how we (all of us) must slow down, create solitude/silence, and listen in order to number our days aright...

Remembering... My husband's goodbye kiss this morning as he left for the office

Planning... a visit to the ocean this weekend - the last of the summer

Thankful for... the fragrance of morning sun on the damp, cool earth; that the workers who I thought would be here all day, left after 15 minutes; that the paperwork we need to get our marriage certificate finally arrived; that I have been blessed with the time and space to just enjoy a cool summer morning on my front porch


summer list - unofficial deliciousness

Though I haven't an official, documented Summer List this year, MM and I have, nevertheless, been trying to make the most of this month off at the tail end of summer. We aren't working on the house. We aren't making lists of things to buy and do. We aren't doing any more than the bare necessity of bookkeeping. We are, however:

- watching LOST from the beginning

- grilling dinner at least once a week on our little tailgate bbq

- sipping as much limeaid as possible

- slurping popsicles on the front porch

- gazing at the crackling blaze in the firepit

Last weekend we bought an inflatable raft and spent a lazy afternoon floating on a pond. This weekend we pitched a tent and camped in our back yard. So fun!

We cooked on the grill and the camp stove. MM had his first bite of a real S'more. (He remains unimpressed.) We spent long, slow days reading comics and making googly eyes at each other from our camp chairs. In the evenings we sipped whiskey by the fire. And after the last log turned to embers, we snuggled up together under the stars, breathing in the scent of pine trees and listening to the frog chorus sing us to sleep.

Simple summer goodness with my man.


tuesdaybook - front porch

Seeing... Leaves, leaves, leaves - and yard grass that's returning to green now that we are giving it some TLC - and squirrels chasing each other violently up and down tree trunks - It is a beautiful, blue-sky summer day!

Hearing... The squawk and twitter of jays and finches and other nameless birds - a dog barking down the street - the long, low, far-off whistle of a train - the wind through all the leaves, leaves, leaves

Wearing... old jeans and my favorite red sweatshirt

Tasting... cinnamon raisin toast smothered in real butter

Creating... space inside my soul to think and feel and dream again

Working... on resting - my job, this morning, is to sit on the front porch

Pondering... nothing much today - this is a day for meandering, whispy thoughts, not deep ones

Remembering... that my soul needs front porches and cinnamon toast and leaves, leaves, leaves...

Planning... a few trips with my One True Love

Thankful for... a whole month of mornings like this - and the Dear Husband who gave them to me

and now we are two

Dear Reader,

I am married. Yay!

And it is grand. To be with my One True Love. All the time. Forever.

Happy are we in our little house with the big yard. Outside, I water the front lawn and he waters the back. We meet at the gate to exchange kisses and "I love yous." In the laundry room, he irons the dress shirts while I fold the towels. In the kitchen, he does the dishes while I make the lunches. I sweep the floor and he sorts the recycling. (Recycling is very important.) At table, he serves the Bread and I serve the Wine....

And everywhere and all the time we pray and talktalktalktalktalk and hold hands and kiss and dance laugh ourselves silly. My husband (!) makes me laugh so hard I snort.

It is good to be married.