Saturday, May 25, 2013

Ahhhh, deep breath

We just took off right in the middle of the week and went to the beach. What a sweet blessing for Coty, Joel and me to have the use of my parent's beach house, and then the added delight of my sister and all but one of her family joining us the next day.

Perfect weather, bright skies, mild breezes, thunderstorms in the afternoon just when we wanted to be chilling out back at the house, a wonderful long ride on a new-found bike trail, a seafood dinner out for the grown ups at a little local joint, some games, books, a movie, fresh strawberries, walks, seashells, a full moon over the inlet last night ...

What is it about a little getaway to that beach house, that is just so refreshing?

It's many things for me.  The beach house was my grandparent's home, so there are many, many happy memories of my own childhood years.  Then my grandparents died, the house passed on down to my dad and mom, and I had children of my own who had the growing up joy of weeks at the beach with their grandparents.  Last summer, I even had the pleasure of beach time with my granddaughter.  So, going to the beach house is about family and continuity and being connected.  Years and years and years of connection to people and place.

Oh, things have changed for sure.  Too many new stores, too many "attractions", too much traffic, too much of a number of things I'd happily do without.  But, when we unlock the door of the beach house and step inside, those things just don't matter, because we smell the smell of the place we know and it doesn't ever change and we relax and settle in to reading on the beach and pimento cheese sandwiches and pecan twirls.  We slow down and sit on the folding chairs on the porch in the morning with our coffee and we watch the same people walk by with their dogs, and hear the towhees calling and the doves cooing.  We walk the four blocks to the beach, past the park and the pond, past new condos and little old beach bungalows, climb up the steps and down the dunes and breathe the salt air and feel the waves on our feet.

Tonight, back at home, I slipped on the sweatshirt that I'd taken with me, but not worn, this week.  As I pulled it down over my head, I got a just a whiff of the beach house.  My sweatshirt, sitting on the back of the chair there for four days, had absorbed the smell.  I pulled the fabric back up over my face and took a deep, deep breath.  Ahhhhh ...

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