Children, I’m hiding. In plain sight.
You may see a familiar woman near algae-covered rocks. She’s probably sitting in a hot pink jelly chair lodged in the orange sand. She may prance along the shore in a red one piece with a “Baywatch”-esque open back and a candy-striped bonnet. This woman may have the brunette hair and generous behind of someone you have come to know as Joanne, but keep a safe distance. Give her a moment. I swear she’ll get back to you after she takes a second to ponder the meaning of life – or whether she needs to reapply her SPF 5,000 sunscreen if she hasn’t gone swimming in the ocean.
All right, I’ll give you five minutes, but that’s it.
I’m in the delightfully touristy Virginia Beach, Va. The beach I’m hiding on is divided into Surfing Area Only and Swim Area Only. I broke this rule on a technicality: I set up my chair in the less crowded Surfing Area Only. I’ve turned it into Sitting Area Only. I watch surfers catch waves or laugh at them when they fall off their boards, as if I could do better. I’m like Gidget, except I’ve been eating my weight in chocolate chip cookie dough fudge from Jody’s Gourmet Popcorn on Laskin Rd. The smell in that store, by the way, is so sweet you need an insulin shot at the door.
Life can be super annoying. You need a moment to yourself so you can remain a sane human being. I’ve heard people call this practice “self-care,” but that sounds like I’m eating kale and meditating in a hut, which I’m not. “Me time” is a tired phrase I associate with getting pedicures with the girls and having it end in a fight about someone’s love interest. Let’s call what I’m doing “Cookie Dough Fudge Time.”
In the words of actress Katharine Hepburn in her autobiography Me — which is my favorite beach read forevertimes: “Let us rest, Kath, let us rest. We just want to take it easy. Give us a break. Oh no, not a break! We’ve had a break — give us a rest!” Yes, she was talk about how her back and legs hurt in her eighties. But still.
My top five on my Virginia Beach trip will be out next week!