Monday, June 21, 2010

Life is a beach

Sometimes in life you just need to get away and recharge. Our son Scott revved up the amps with a simple invitation. He wanted to take his girls Chloe and Livy on a vacation to Myrtle Beach and would we like to come along? I was on it like a bee on watermelon.

Beginning when Scott was seven years old, we began an annual trek to Myrtle Beach in combination with attending the Southern 500 at the Darlington Speedway. Sticking with a "tourist town" theme, we'd spend the first night in Gatlinburg, TN, and ride the Ober Gatlinburg up into the mountains, and then drive to Myrtle Beach the next day. It was always a very kid-centric trip: go-karts, bumper boats, riding the ocean waves on a rubber raft, swimming pool activities, miniature golf, and of course, lots of seafood and the usual sunburn. I believe we went about five times and usually stayed at The Breakers Resort. Now that resort has become a complex of about five towers, all oceanfront.

Scott wanted to recreate those same memories for his girls, so here we are at The Breakers after spending the night before in Gatlinburg (and yes, we rode the Ober Gatlinburg). We've already been slapped around by the ocean waves and we've tested the new circuit of swimming pools, including a lazy river and a pirate's ship pool, that The Breakers offers. We took a drive down Ocean Blvd. and remembered some of the existing resorts and marveled at some of the new ones. There have been changes -- like even more super-sized beachwear stores -- but enough remains the same that prove the memories are accurate.

Just like Scott and us, the girls love sitting on the balcony and listening to the surf and watching people walk the beach. They love playing in the ocean and shelling. Scott loves watching them have the same great adventure he remembers so clearly. And we love watching him watch them with such delight.

We've only just begun here, and my battery is already fully charged.

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