Monday, December 06, 2004

Life's a beach

I am still in Florida. There is a very nice beach here. Yesterday I decided it might cheer me up to go sit there, catch some rays, and watch the surf come in, go out, come in, ad infinitum,in a soothing kind of way.

It was only after I had unravelled beach chair from handy carrier bag type thing, completed Ph.D in beach chair assembly, planted self securely in a good spot (quite near the lifeguard station but not too close to large flock of marauding seagulls), shook sand out of shoes, lathered self with lotion, put on hat, had drink of water and handful of trail mix, unearthed sunglasses from bottom of beach bag, together with New Yorker magazine and other reading material, and adjusted skimpy boy-surf shorts which had begun to ride up in unseemly fashion and indeed cut into self, that I realised...the enormity of my error.

Because the beach was suddenly full of children. Specifically, small chubby toddlers wearing funny bathing suits and floppy hats, swaybacked and fat tummied, clutching pails and buckets in eager little fists. Headed right in my direction.

Maddeningly, one small munchkin plopped himself a hand's breadth away from my perch, and began building the Great Wall of China in the sand, humming some little tune over and over under his sweet baby breath.

The surf came in. The surf went out. The world continued to spin on its axis. And there was a well of tears behind my sunglasses.

Finally, small munchkin's mother appeared from somewhere, whistling for him and calling his name over and over in a high-pitched squeal, like he was a purebred puppy. Honestly, I don't mean to judge other people's parenting skills, but is it reallly necessary to summon your offspring in that manner? Here boy, fetch. Good doggie.

I think for the rest of the visit, I will stick with sitting on the end of my dad's dock, watching the mullet jump. This is also quite soothing. Who needs all that sand anyway.


At 2:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My thoughts are with you Mare. Couldn't stand to go to a Christmas tree lighting billed as a "great family activity" after my damn period arrived Saturday, 4 F-ing days early, depriving me of even so much as the chance to pee on a stick.

At 9:12 AM, Blogger Stacy said...

Mare, how do you like Florida? I hope your having a great time and relaxing. I would take the dock over te beach too! Enjoy your stay.


At 1:35 PM, Blogger sherry said...

Mare is just a 20 hour drive away from me!!!!! ON THE SAME CONTINENT!!

I hope your enjoying yourself in Florida...

At 2:18 PM, Blogger lobster girl said...

I'm sorry, Mare. That's pretty much the last thing you needed. There should be warning signs, like "Warning: Strong Tides. Children Likely."

And shrieky mothers, yes. My SIL was barking at her daughter to be quiet recently. But her daughter is 6 MONTHS OLD. She's not a pet, gah.

At 4:32 PM, Blogger Anna H. said...

Ugh! The fact that IF can ruin a perfectly good day at the beach with the New Yorker says it all... simple pleasures become so complicated, so fraught.

I'm so sorry Mare. So, so sorry.

The dock sounds lovely, though.


At 7:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh Mare.
After my miscarriage my husband and I decided to go to Disney. With my in-laws, who'd just had their first grandchild by evil SIL.
Don't know what any of us were thinking.

At 7:33 PM, Blogger amyesq said...

Stay on the dock! Living in So.Cal. I came to the conclusion last summer that the beaches are no longer safe. To many cute little bottoms (of the baby variety) in bathing suits building sand castles.

And to think I used to go to the beach to try to pick up guys... those were the days.


At 12:17 AM, Blogger E. said...

Crap -- I hate that so few places are safe for us. I'm so sorry -- have a nice read on that warm dock.

At 12:56 AM, Blogger Sheri said...

I'm so sorry.

At 1:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sorry Mare. I'm thinking of you.



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