Birthday Fun!

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So The Lovely Rhonda turns an undisclosed, youthful age today, and to celebrate this we repaired to the beach for grown-up time.

This almost didn’t happen because some child-care arrangement plans fell through, but my adorable cousin Carmen agreed to come stay the weekend with our children.  Despite having met them all before.  We cannot thank her enough, but I do aim to try.

It was especially an issue since the room was prepaid through one of those internet things, but it wouldn’t have been the end of the world.  It would have just felt that way as we squatted in our hovel surrounded by our grubby, ill-behaved children, visions of gamboling the days away on the endless sunny beaches…

But I digress.

It turns out that January is not the peak season for beach excursions in the northern parts of the Oregon coast.  And it turns out also that the many and diverse storm fronts that have moved through the region, really attacking it from all directions in the past week, make for some interesting driving conditions.  We were fortunate in that the worst of the downed trees, icy roads and power outages were resolved before we embarked on our journey.  However, the rain did monsoon and the wind did buffet our valiant minivan around, and the highway was littered with tufty evergreen twigs and the occasional car in the ditch (facing the wrong way, even).

Nevertheless and against all odds, we arrived, barely, in time to eat at Mo’s as is customary.  When we opened the doors to the van they blew open very dramatically which made us laugh and shriek like the little girls we are.  The server obliged with free ice cream on TLR’s dessert and we sang the birthday song despite the fact that there was only one other table of customers in front of whom to be humiliated.  Tradition must be upheld!

The night at the hotel was uneventful, although I did make the desk clerk laugh.  She asked what kind of car we had and at first we had difficulty remembering the make and model.  In our defense, it was late and we were tired.  Finally I told her that if the Titanic had been made into a minivan, it would be ours.  It turns out that this is good enough for hotel recordkeeping purposes.

The next day we finally emerged around lunchtime to uphold another tradition, the Storming of the Outlet Mall.  I did not photograph this. You’re welcome.

Lunch was had, and we made our way to the beach for the obligatory Stroll on the Shore.  It was actually quite clear and very windy and you could totally see how stormy it had been.  Lots of foam and the beach was rather scooped away.

Lincoln City, OR

After dutifully admiring nature’s majestic splendor for at least thirty minutes (per regulations) we made our way to a coffee shop and obtained beverages and a nifty pack of playing cards emblazoned with pirate facts.  Also some hats, which The Lovely Rhonda models for you here:

Tide's coming in.

We sat and played rummy and absorbed heat from the gas fireplace for a time, then hit a store for comestibles including a bottle of wine.  I do not care for wine, but TLR does.  Off to the hotel!

Sadly, the pocket corkscrew TLR travels with was not up to the challenge and broke off, necessitating a trip to the front desk for some tools.

The monkey pokes the anthill with the stick and licks the ants off, thus demonstrating use of tools.

I am happy to report that the wine was successfully opened and TLR enjoyed it immensely.

Today we revisited the seawall and found that it was raining and windy, and the tide was coming in to the point of splashing over the seawall.  We parked facing the seawall and watched for a while, as did many others.  Next to us was a family in a large beefy manly truck.  Mom and Gawky Teenage Son got out to look while Dad stayed in the truck and occasionally locked Mom out, apparently for his personal amusement.

At one point Mom returned to the truck and emerged with her laptop, which she then used to (evidently) capture some video of the Big Angry Ocean, as we had taken to calling it.  We were deeply impressed with this and so I had to snap a few shots.  I kept waiting for the wind to catch it and sail it into the ocean, or at least dash it to bits on the wet, sandy seawall, but no.  Luck favors the idiotic, so it seems.

As Darwin spins in his grave...

I waited patiently for a moment when the sea would splash over the wall, and in the meantime saw a small be-sweatered dog reluctantly enjoying a brisk stroll in the driving rain and wind.

A fine day for a constitutional!

Every time I tried to get the shot, the stupid kid wandered into the frame.  WHY MUST I SUFFER FOR MY ART.

"Gawky Teen with Seawall, 2012"

At last, victory was mine!

Finally! The Gawky Teen got the hell out of the way.

Then we drove home in yet more pouring rain, the end.

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