i used to go to the ocean city boardwalk every summer as a kid. i remember once misplacing my parents on the boardwalk at night for what was probably under five seconds but panicking, the crowds growing tall around me, until i spotted my 6'5" father (his height got my sisters and i out of various states of being lost as children many times, i'm sure). my grandparents lived on 17th and wesley and their house with the brown and white striped awning was such a welcome sight after that hour (a millennium to a child!) drive. and then as a high school student, on half days at the end of the year, my friends and i would take off right from school for the beach and boardwalk. the ocean really too cold to swim but those days a hemp necklaces, some mack n mancos pizza, and a tan were our top priorities.
it's been fun to show it to my kids for several years now. my grandparents are both gone but it brings back such good memories. my mom-mom's buttered rice, kohr brothers soft serve (though, polish water ice was really more my thing), and the surf mall where i'd consider henna but always decide to skip it in favor of a cheap pair of sunglasses. those long beach days, and early nights on the boardwalk as the sun set and all the stores became illuminated from within, twinkling lights everywhere you turn. magic. those are some of my best summer memories and i hope my kids feel the same way.
after a dinner of fast, hot mack n mancos pizzas, coming out of the oven quicker than we could keep up, alongside cold cups of birch beer, we headed to castaway cove and bought more tickets than we needed. sometimes its nice to splurge instead of rationing them out so carefully. especially because i'm starting to wonder how long william and lindsey will actually like hanging out with us, and how the times where we can just whisk them away for vacations are dwindling. summer jobs, friends, girlfriends and/or boyfriends calling them home? (i sort of hate the thought of it.) so, ticket splurge it was! they grabbed a bunch and headed off with our cousin colleen to ride the huge swinging pirate ship, the ferris wheel, the gravitron (remember the gravitron?! there was a time when i thought it was great fun. now i'm pretty sure i'd demand the ride be stopped so i could get off.). they checked in just long enough to do some bumper cars with steve and parker. meanwhile parker and his cousin nora rode the little cars that go around in a circle and i'm pretty sure they would've been happy to continue doing that two tickets at a time for hours.
i absolutely love bringing the people i love back to the places i loved (and love!).
and that's a lot of love.