Monday is the day I’ve been looking forward to – beach day. I haven’t had a true beach day all summer. This includes cocktails, snacks, and at least five hours of sun. Mike has work, so the girls and I trek to the beach armed with coolers and towels and a beach chair around 11:30am.
I loved packing for this day. One cooler is filled with beers for Lauren. Another drink cooler is filled with a concoction for me and Sarah – citron vodka, fresca, and crystal light raspberry lemonade. We both agree it’s too sweet, but I had no other mixers, so sweet it stays. I’ve made us each a sandwich, turkey and cheese for Lauren, ham and cheese for me and Sarah. Both topped with lettuce, salt, pepper, and sweet hot mustard. I throw in salt and pepper ketel chips and harvest cheddar sun chips. I almost grabbed a bag of Twizzlers because Sarah would have appreciated it, but I chose not to include the empty calories. One bottle of water that none of us will drink, and some napkins. A few cups, straws, and plenty of ice. It’s not a long walk, but with everything we’re carrying, it seems like forever until we reach our spot – it really only takes 15 minutes.
Sarah and I have a little tiff about where we’re going to drop our stuff. It’s probably the only real fight we have all weekend. It’s quick, and we both let it go. We never used to let anything go. “Do you want a drink yet?” Yes. I lotion up and get settled with my cocktail. It’s a gorgeous day and this early there’s not too many people on the beach. It’s weird – people always come to the beach at like 3 or 4pm with coolers and everything. And I’m not talking about during the week when they have work during the day. They do it on the weekends, too.
Lauren asks me to take a picture. “Can you take a picture of Sarah and I?” Sometimes I hold my tongue, but sometimes I can’t help myself. Lauren doesn’t seem like the type of person who gets mad easily, so I say it. Sarah and me. So ensues the whole conversation about when to say ‘me’ and when to say ‘I’. I think of it as simply as I can: if you take out the other person, it’s easy to figure out. For example: I’m going to the mall. Lauren and I are going to the mall. You don’t just change it to me. Lauren is going to the movies with me. Lauren is going to the movies with Sarah and me. It’s that simple. Sarah, of course, explains the actual proper English of it all. If the verb comes before, then it’s me; if the verb comes after, then it’s I. Something like that. I really should know this. I guess I only paid attention to the tricks.
Today is my first time in the Pacific Ocean, and it’s only to break the seal. I don’t really like going in that much – I get scared of sea creatures. And waves. But the main reason I haven’t gone in yet this summer is because I never really get that hot. There’s always a nice breeze. If I was in Jersey, I’m sure I absolutely would have been in the water by now. It’s definitely cold, but once I’m in it doesn’t feel so bad. I go in the water four times all day, and the later it gets, the bigger and stronger the waves.
At 5:00 we head back to shower and get ready for the night. We have reservations at Chaya Venice at 9. Mike should make it home in time to go with us. Obviously, the Olympics are on. It’s a good thing they’re going on right now, because my guests would really have nothing to watch with only eight channels on my TV. I put on shorts and a long sleeve shirt and I’m ready. Lauren is looking through her clothes, trying to pick out something to wear. “Well what are you wearing tonight?” I look down at my clothes. This. Lauren laughs. “No, really, what are you wearing tonight?” Really, I’m wearing this. “Well, yea, to the beach but what about later.” Lauren, I swear, I’m wearing this. “No, it’s nice, I just thought we were dressing up.”
I find the whole exchange humorous. I do wear dresses a lot when I go out; I’m just not in the mood. You have to be in the mood to wear a dress. Lauren cracks me up. We are going to walk back to the beach before dinner to watch the sunset. Sarah looked it up online and it said 8:17. Mike walks in the door around 7:30. Do you want to go watch the sunset with us? I already know the answer. He looks at me like, why would I want to watch a sunset?
We reach the beach at 8 and it hasn’t set, but it’s behind some mountains already. We needed to get here earlier, but oh well, we’re here, let’s take some pictures. We get some good ones, but I can tell they’re both a little disappointed.
As we’re walking off, a guy stops us and asks if we want him to take our picture. Sure! We don’t have any of the three of us so this is perfect. Lauren and Sarah give him their cameras and I follow suit. Sorry, this is annoying to have to take so many. “I just finished shooting a wedding in Mexico, so I’m used to it.” Oh. OK, then. We got ourselves a real photographer.
He takes the standard shots and then, “you want to do something fun?” Umm. “You wanna jump?” Oh, God. I’ve never done this before and I feel really silly doing it. I’ve seen my share of jump pics gone bad. Or just jumps gone stupid. But this guy knows what he’s doing. We jump on the count of three, and I feel like I’m air born for less than a second. It’s pathetic. I’ve got no ups. Somehow, he makes it look cool. It actually looks like we’re jumping really high, when in reality, we’re barely getting off the ground.
We’re back in time for a cab to the restaurant. It’s a cool place. Lauren’s friend told her she should go here, and I’ve heard good things about it so I’ve been wanting to check it out. The sushi is supposed to be good, so we just do that and share everything. Sarah takes over and orders the bottle of wine and all the sushi. I love not being in charge.
The sushi is fresh and delicious. The rolls are simple and tasty and we don’t get too much. (We all seem to be on a tight budget.) We’re on main street, which is lined with bars, so I suggest we walk around and go to another one. I’m really tired from a long day in the sun and drinking non-stop, but this is Lauren’s last night and I want them to have a good time. We walk down the street looking for Brick & Mortar – Mike and I have both been to this bar. It’s further than I thought, and Mike says he’s going to throw up. He’s been saying it all weekend; watching the Olympics and putting himself in the athletes’ place, or actually, talking about doing anything physical.
We finally reach the bar and it’s worth it. I really like this place. Cool ambience, friendly servers, decent beer and wine. Maybe I should stop in with my resume. Lilly’s closing is official. Last day is August 31. I knew it was going to close soon, but getting the note from Francis with the actual date made it feel so final and real. Who knows what’s to come.
We stay for one drink and then wait outside for a cab – Mike already called. This big van cab pulls up and there’s only one row of seats towards the back. So much foot room! Sarah sits in the front chatting with our friendly cab driver. He’s awesome. Turns out he used to drive a cab in Hoboken. Of course he did.