Fog crept over the beach and grassy dunes, clinging to the sand despite the best efforts of the high-overhead sun. Feet numbed by the cold ocean, and ears filled with the crash of the surf, we held hands and jumped over waves.
We were finishing up a short overnight stay at Ocean City State Park in Washington, and decided to take the time to enjoy the beach a little before heading off on what promised to be a long drive. What a beach it was – the only one we actually got sun at, for starters. It just stretched north and south, disappearing into the fog, with the wind whipping the grass on the dunes behind us. It was nice sand, too, the kind that’s nice to dig toes into, soft and fine. A troop of horses quietly marched past us, watched intently by two pairs of envious kid-eyes. A helicopter zoomed overhead, seeming impossibly low. Cameron couldn’t believe his eyes, that there were cars ON the beach – this seemed fairly common there and in Oregon, and isn’t something we’re really used to seeing. Cameron and Kate ran and hollered and danced and whirled, enjoying the freedom.
It didn’t take much coaxing to get Cameron to follow me into the water, where we both got sandy and soaked. We skipped and hopped over white foam, then I assisted on super-jumps over waves that reached my thighs. Cameron quickly lost his nerve, and turned to flee, giggling and laughing, back to the safety of the dry sand. Unfortunately, he discovered that running on sand with water rushing around your feet, pulling at your ankles, is tough as he lost his footing and splooshed into the water face-first. That marked the end of the wave-play, it scared him, though I was right there and hauled him up right away. Can’t really blame him – the rushing water probably made him feel like he was being carried away, and we’d already chatted about how the ocean just went on for days and days out there.
Then it was time to pack up, return over the low dunes, and head out … for a very long day indeed.