Today was, "Go to Crane Beach with 4 other moms and 15 kids between us Day." I do love this day. It started when I left my house at 8am in the morning with my 15 passenger van. By 9:15 all the friends had been gathered and we were on our way up the Massachusetts Pike with a completely full 15 passenger van and one extra car following along.
We arrived at Crane Beach in Ipswich at about 11:30. We ran into a little bit of traffic but it was a beautiful day to drive so I would never, ever complain about traffic. When we drove into the parking lot at the beach and I saw how empty it was I just knew it was going to be a great day. I love when you arrive at Crane Beach because you can not see the beach from the parking lot so you are filled with anticipation. You unload the car, load your children, and yourself with things you can not live without on the beach. Then you head up to the wooden stairs and boardwalk through some amazing tall, blowing in the wind, grasses and then there it is.... the Atlantic Ocean and the waves are breaking on a flat white beach that goes on and on and on in either direction. I had forgotten how truly stunning Crane Beach is. The tide was out when we arrived and there were some sand bars that were definitely calling my name. I am frantically searching for the perfect words to explain to you how fabulous the day was. There was a breeze. The water was 65 degrees. The kids were building in the sand and playing in the water. The seagulls...um yeah, a little bothersome, but yet oh so entertaining.....like me :) I had my cherries. I had my four friends to chat with. I had my paper and a clipboard.....what? Yes, you heard me :) You never know when you may need to write.
As soon as we dropped our stuff in the sand the kids and I headed off to explore the sand bars. In the water that was sitting between the sand bars there was schools of little fish that were oh so fun to try to herd....which we tried to do for way too long. The only downside of the day was a time limit. We all knew that would be the way it was before we ever left Western Massachusetts and yet, we still decided to go. My most very favorite situation is a beach day without a time limit. I love to be the last one on the beach in the evening and to drive home in the dark with sleeping kids. That will happen on our next beach trip which will hopefully be the third week of August. But today was still very fun. I wonder if I rented a beach house and stayed for a week if it would be possible to get tired of the beach?
Tatiana and her friends built a sand wall next to the shore and while I watched them frantically try to stop the tide from destroying it I found myself remembering all the times I had built something on the beach and thought I could keep the tide from destroying it. You can't hold back the tide no matter how you try. It may take time but eventually it will come. Interesting to think about.
On the way home I asked my friends riding in my car with me when was the first time they ever went to the beach? As I listened to them tell their stories I found myself thinking about when was the first time I ever saw the ocean and I realized that the Pacific Ocean had always been a part of my life. I remember my dad driving our big old yellow Cadillac on the beach when I was a kid. I remember my parents finding a green Japanese fishing float on the beach. I remember my dad losing our car keys on a very rocky beach in La Push, Washington. I remember being tumbled into shore by a huge wave in San Clemente, California when I was 12. Ever since that experience I still love the ocean but do not get into the water the way I used to. The first time I saw the Atlantic Ocean was when I had Zach and Madeline and it was Christmas Day in New Jersey.
I wish there was a way to describe all the thoughts in my head as I sat on the beach and took in everything....the texture of the sand on Crane Beach is very fine and the way it feels as you dig your feet in and bury them is so soothing. The color of the water was so true. The Crane Beach Estate sitting back on the hill looks so stately. And don't forget all the beach sounds. It reminded me that I once had a roomate in college who had a tape with wave sounds on it that she would listen to when she was trying to sleep. I found myself wondering if everyone else is thinking the same sort of things when they are at the beach. Are they sighing inside at the gloriousness of it all or all they thinking about what is for dinner? I have a feeling I might be the only person in the world who has constant longing in my heart at the beach and a constant awareness of all the details...but do tell me if you understand, maybe we could go to the beach together and marvel at all the amazing-ness together :)