I recently returned from the best vacation spot I have ever known. The beach. Not a drinkable blue Caribbean beach, or a sugar white sand Florida beach or even a palm tree dotted Hawaiian beach. My beach, the beach to which I have faithfully always returned is Sandbridge in the southernmost coastal tip of Virginia. I've been going there since I was 8 years old, sharing a week with 4 other girls, all of whom are as close as sisters, and our parents.
This year, my father celebrated his 75th birthday by inviting extended family as well as his own childhood friends to stay in a mammoth house on the beach. What began in 1968 as 4 adults and 5 girls has, over the years ballooned into Twenty-two what with spouses and children and all. That plus the additional family and friends turned into thirty-three this summer; an interesting mix of ages, personalities and politics.
Politics. Let's just say that a lot of "tea" seemed the popular topic. You'd recognize me at these points in the day because I was the one trying to bury myself in the sand. No, my idea of vacation includes very little political brain exercise - especially when the topic is Newt (For which my father proudly shares his nickname) Gingerich. The only Ginger rich things I was interested in was the delectable bread that one of the guests brought with her ( 12 loaves!)
Our oldest guest was hovering around 80 years old while the youngest, a set of twins were going to be 8 years old soon. It is safe to say that in our house the majority of guests were mid 70's. This house had a pool which, for hardy beach girls like myself, is a whimps way to swim. I mean where is the challenge in a pool? There are no waves to negotiate, no jellyfish to avoid, crabs to step on or dolphins to chase (nor are there any cute boys to discover, oogle and fantasize about.) On the first morning at the beach, one of the young twins stood by the pool gate shaking his head. "Why do we have a pool at the beach?" he asked. I had to tell him the truth, "It's for the old people. This house is FULL of old people and you know what THAT means." He dramatically rolled his eyes and replied, "I sure do! It means I havta stay off their lawns!"
Considering the political climate of the group we were spending the week with, I think the 8 year olds advice was probably the wisest.