No, not the beach. (I live in Maryland, we don't go to the shore, we go downy oshun, hon).
The shore is a magical little house in Edgemere, Maryland where I spent all of my summers (and by spent I mean every Sunday because there isn't anywhere to sleep at the shore, or a shower...and it's only 30 minutes from my house).
The shore smells of childhood. Why? Because there is a pool. There is open space to run around until your legs fall off. You can walk through the house dripping wet and not worry about ruining things. There are ducks to feed.
The shore holds my very best summer memories. I have been to the ocean. I have been to Mexico, and the Bahamas, and St. Maarten. But they don't compare to the shore. The shore is where I spent time with my family. I learned to swim there. I learned to dive into a pool there (I wouldn't recommend this method, the pool is only 4 feet deep). I played countless hours of very competitive pool volleyball. I sailed with my dad (in the early days of sailing I laid in the bottom of the boat and cried, a true sailor).
The shore is where I feel most connected to my grandma Fran, my Aunt Sis, and my Uncle Carl. I can picture them playing cards at the crowded table. I can see them fishing from the pier. I can feel their hugs. I miss them terribly, but at the shore, I don't miss them so much because I know they are there.
Not everyone has a shore, so I know how lucky I am. To have a place by the water is something so magical. Life moves a little slower. Priorities change a little. Time can almost stand still.
I want my children, Lily and Jack, to love the shore as much as I do. I want them to learn to swim in the pool (maybe not learn to dive...). I want them to run around the yard. I want them to fish and feed the ducks and the go sailing. I want them to enjoy their family. To learn from their family. To learn about their family. I want them to understand how important family is.
I think we are already taking the steps to Lily's appreciation of the shore. This summer, she can really begin to have fun down there. She loves to run around the yard and feed the ducks. I am sure, once the weather gets warmer and the pool is clean, she will love to swim. She is such an outside girl that a place like the shore is perfect for her.
I hope the shore always lives on. Yes, it's getting old. It
I can't wait for this summer to unfold...at the shore.
|Lily and Pop on the pier|
|View from the backyard|
|Jack and Sara. Sorry about the pink hat, buddy.|
|Jack...not amused by the pink hat.|
|Lily testing the kayak on land.|