We checked in late afternoon to the Surfside Hotel after a dinner of blackened fish tacos (the best) at Mama Kwan's. We reached our room. I dropped our bags and slid the curtains and the glass door open. The sea air burst in. The rascals took immediately to the beds flopping from one to the other. I thought about how the novelty of staying in a motel does not wear off. It is always thrilling.
I stepped out onto the balcony and leaned into the breeze. It was very cool. High 60s.
I watched the waves. I squinted my eyes at them as if they were telling me something but over their crashing and the whistling wind I couldn't quite make it out.
I walked back in with a questions for the troop, "Would you guys rather jump in the pool or head straight for the beach?"
It would be lying to say I didn't hope they'd choose the predictability of the indoor pool just downstairs from where we were. Four walls and a foreseeable floor. No curling waves hiding randomness in their rims.
"The pool!!" [I may have mentioned the
We scrambled with suits and towels and our hotel card keys. Avery is the last of the four to need a flotation device fashioned to her figure these days when we swim. It goes without saying that she would rather be floatie free like the rest of 'em. But, she has insistent parents who would rather not worry.
The pool was perfect. Very loud. Though Dr. Gooch thought out loud how he might like an indoor pool. I thought out loud how it's too loud. There was a hot tub, too. Whenever there's a hot tub we always talk about how gross hot tubs are and cringe a little as we see our children filling their mouths with hot tub water and spitting it at one another. Hot tub to pool to hot tub to pool. Their dad threw them in the pool one by one over and over, except Lucy who has
"Just look at them. They're so happy. This is just what they needed."
This is just what I needed, I thought.
We gave them the ten minute warning. It was time to head in for a snack and a shower and maybe a sunset walk in the dunes. Avery wandered over to me and presented me with her best 3-year-old argument as to why she should take off her vest. "Because I don't like it, Mama!" We both tried to talk her out of it. But, we gave in. "You can only get in the hot tub for a minute then we need to go."
Dr. Gooch put on his jacket. I began to round up eight shoes. Avery wandered toward the door, then stopped at the steps of the pool and walked right in. That little panicked face sinking.
"Craig, get her!!" I yelled.
He jumped in and yanked her out of the pool. I sat her on the chair. She was fine, a little shaken up, but fine.
"You see", I began, "this is why we want you to wear your vest."
"Okay, Mama." Meanwhile, Dr. Gooch was groaning and hunched over holding his knees.
"I broke my toe." He had jumped in the pool landing on his toe folded under his foot.
Craig and Lucy limped, Avery was carried, and the rest of us walked cold and wet back to the hotel.
The following day we were back on the beach for the first time since July 19th.
bad things happen to good toes
we are not in charge of stuff
so just keep swimming
but take your time.