Sunday, August 06, 2006

Sun and fun

What's better than coming home after a relaxing weekend at the beach to find that a large bottle of liquid laundry soap has exploded all over the closet where your washing machine lives?

I'll answer that: many things are better. Nevertheless, the immediate need to clean up the mess and a, "damn, I might as well mop the kitchen too" decision, do not take away from the fun of the beach, camping and spending time with a friend.

The weekend was filled with sun-time, body surfing, hamburgers, tan lines and chocolate dipped ice cream cones. While it was not perfect (it never is, that's part of the joy), the trip was particularly enjoyable because the weather was 100% cooperative. The water was cool but it was hot enough to swim and dry off in the sun. As a consequence, my body now bears the outline of my ten-year-old bathing suit. While I'm very good about slathering on the sunscreen and always wearing a hat (which I did the entire weekend), I can't deny that I'm pleased to have gotten some color. While the color is currently "pink," I'm not burnt and in a few days I'll be very mildly tan.

Pele and I camped, as is our custom. After setting up our tent and heading to the beach I said, "Pele, there's something I need to tell you. I never want camp here again." The campground was a short walk to the beach (though we drove because we didn't realize there was an easy walking path) but was simply a clear piece of land with no shade and many, many, MANY RVs. We were in a small tent area, but it was no more pleasing than the other parts of the campground. I'm all for doing things on the cheap, and I'm as happy to camp as to sleep in a modest motel, but this was a campground too far. Pele said, "Part of what I like about camping is being in nature. If that only means being surrounded by trees. But this place offers none of that."

It was far from a disaster because we spent almost no time at the campground. It was all beach and boardwalk. Saturday night we ate dinner at "The Frog House" in Bethany Beach. On high shelves all around the restaurant were stuffed frogs, ceramic frogs, mugs in the shape of get the idea. Kermit the Frog was tacked to a wall one booth over from us. The restaurant had no other froggy aspects (the walls were not blue/green, just plain white) and the food was uninspiring--as expected.

The next day, we found ourselves drawn, irresistibly, to Ocean City. It's a great boardwalk beach town. Just enough stuff without being overwhelming, according to Pele. I am partial to Myrtle Beach, which is much larger, due to a few childhood vacations I spent there. Look, Myrtle Beach has go-karts—can you top that, Ocean City? Maybe not, but Ocean City did right by us, yet again, and I know we'll be back.

It's always good to get home to a real bed after camping. It's off to Herndon tomorrow, so posting will be light or non-existent on Monday.

Grateful for: the beach.

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