There are two main reasons people go to the beach: to relax and to have fun. The other day I witnessed a debacle of a beach trip. They made going to the beach look really hard.
I’m lucky; the beach is out my mom’s back door. When I’m at the beach, it’s as close for me to go to the bathroom in the ocean as it is to go back to the house. Booker my dog feels the same way.
Captain and I head to the beach at 11am. Most people are already there. Some are baking in the sun. Some have umbrellas. Captain has his XL Sport-Brella; an amazing invention if you’re into umbrellas. It takes under five minutes to set up and then we have shade for the rest of the day.
Four hours of relaxing and fun later, a family comes marching down to the beach. There are four adults and one grown kid. It’s 3pm. Half the beach is already packing up and leaving for the day. The wind is strong. Captain, my mom and I are protected in our Sport-Brella.
First they pull out what looks like a tent. They struggle to open it in the wind. They start putting poles into it. It’s not a tent, it’s a wind fence. They try to stick it in the sand. It’s too windy for the wind fence. They put sand in the pockets of the wind fence. Still too windy. One of the guys pulls out a metal trowel. He digs and digs. There’s one deep hole. This might work. He digs a few more holes and the wind fence stakes are buried. It’s holding up. This process took about half-hour. I figure now they’ll get down to the business of relaxing.
The grown kid is sitting in a chair with a towel over his head. The four adults start opening umbrellas. Is this really happening? It is now going on 4pm. They get two umbrellas up. The third breaks. One of the guys goes away and comes back with duct tape and a stick. They fix the umbrella. There are now three umbrellas and a wind fence. They take clothespins and try to clip the umbrellas to the wind fence. It is too windy for that. The grown kid is still sitting in the sun with a towel over his head.
Two more adults show up with a baby. Ok, so 4pm with a baby, yes you want to keep the baby out of the sun, but that’s what a tent is for. I spoke too soon. They pull out a tent. They struggle to get the tent up. Maybe they’re staying overnight. It takes them an hour-and-a-half to set up and a little after 5pm they start to break it all down.
Note kid on the left with blue and black towel over his head.
Will he ever get shade?