Thursday, May 31, 2007

Surf's Up, Baby!

In less than two days, I leave for a fabulous week of sun, surf and sand in my home town! I can smell the fresh, salty air already!! Huntington Beach was a funky little beach town when I was growing up, with lots of surf shops, smoothie & sandwich places, T-shirt shops, etc.

My high school was 1/4-mile from the beach, and we used to walk to the beach every day after summer school. Our favorite place to hang out on the beach was next to the HB pier, where there was always lots of great surfing to watch and everyone I knew hung out there (sort of like the mall these days, I guess...). We'd lay out on our huge towels, sunbathe, watch all the people, swim in the fresh, cool ocean, watch the surfers, and buy "strips" and a coke from a snack shack nearby. I can't believe that was so many years ago....I can remember it all like it was yesterday!

My, things have changed over the years---and not all for the good, I'm afraid. As with all good things, progress occurs and the place you once knew as home is no longer recognizable. There are huge hotels and townhouses on PCH where the Golden Bear club and the "head shop" (anyone remember those?) once were. (Just for the record, I never set foot inside, and have NO idea what they sold there, or what a hash pipe or a bong even IS!) Jack's Surf Shop is still there--they managed to survive the wrecking ball through the years---but it looks more like an Old N*vy store than the funky surf shop it once was.

Main Street in HB is now crowded with restaurants, bars and tourists. I was shocked the first time I went back after most of the major changes---but the pier, the gorgeous sparkling ocean and the beach are all still there, so it still feels like home to me. Unfortunately, my family no longer lives there, so now I must pay to stay where I grew up.

After many visits of staying someplace else less costly and driving to the beach for the day or an evening pier walk, we decided to stay at the place that is now closest to the HB pier, right on the corner of PCH and Main Street. One thing about getting old is, though my once cute bikini body has now been replaced with something larger I'd prefer not to talk about, fortunately my resources have grown as well. So yes, just like swarming tourists in my own home town, cute hubby and I will be staying here!

Not our usual level of vacation digs, to be sure. But we decided that we would like a little comfort and convenience this time around---and it is our vacation. And the best part is, the hotel is directly across the street from my old favorite beach location and I can go out and just take a stroll at sunset on the pier any time I want!! No drive to get there and no dreaded hunt for parking! I'm smelling fresh ocean air and enjoying this vacation already! Can you tell I can't wait to get there?!

So I'll be thinking about all of you "inlanders" as I watch the surfers, walk the pier and sit and knit on the beach! For one week, I'll be a local again.....I guess you can take the girl away from the beach, but you can't take the beach away from the girl! :) You can, of course, add a little knitting to the picture....

Now, can we talk about borrowing back that bikini body for the week...?

>^..^< ..........."Hang ten!" (Techno-cat)

>^oo^<.........."Hang twelve!" (Toe-cat)

>^--^<......."I'm catching some nappage, dudes---don't wake me up" (chief minion-cat)