Oh geez, did I win my own bet? You bet I did. I picked all 6 agreed upon Oscar categories, no mistakes -- not bad, if I do say so myself. Especially considering I saw the fewest of the nominated films. So I'm thinking a nice classic 6 pack of Sierra Nevada. I'm not exactly sure how we'll work that out....I guess 3 bottles each from both Jacquie and Ellie? Or maybe Jacquie just buys the whole 6 pack and then Ellie buys Jacquie 3 beers the next time she sees her? Or maybe Jacquie only owes me 1, since she supplied me with a couple of beers at the beach today.
Yes, we spent a lovely, chilly Sunday afternoon at Ocean Beach, our kids running crazy, climbing rocks, and sand mounds, and lifeguard towers (which really aren't towers, but I'm not sure what else to call them), then jumping off most of them.
And although the beach, especially in the winter when very few people are there, is a terrific place for the kids to get exercise and work off their excess energy, there's another compelling reason to take them there, as opposed to the park, or the playground, or the pool. It's the sound. The ocean is loud, as it's in constant motion, the waves continuously breaking, the tide always coming or going. The sound, the unceasing background cacophony at the beach, is so liberating, for both child and parent.
I don't feel the constant need for the volume control, as I do in my attached townhouse, or in the library, or a restaurant, or most all public spaces. Its one of the only places I go to that I don't feel the need to monitor my children's decibel level. Scream, shriek, howl, it's all allowed, it's all okay, and hardly anyone will hear you anyway. That's not to say that I haven't sent my kids away from me, shooing them off to yell somewhere closer to the tide line. But it works, they take their high-pitched yowls down to the breaking waves, and honestly, it's so loud they can hardly hear each other. Perfect.
I love the ocean for myriad reasons, in fact I'd have to say it's (not necessarily the Pacific Ocean, but oceans in general) probably my favorite of nature's amazing gifts, but one of those reasons, especially at this point in my life, is definitely its magnificent roaring sound.