Tuesday, August 9, 2011

To the Beach

Today's inspiration:

To the Beach:
Living in Los Angeles you find that you are never really very far from the beach…ever.  However, because of this pesky thing called traffic, people here generally stay within their neighborhood bubble and never leave it unless forced to.  Well two weekends ago I decided that I wanted to go to the beach, but was feeling kind of lazy, and while it is within my bubble it was still kind of a hassle.

Let me explain to you why going to the beach isn’t as easy and wonderful as it sounds.  First you have to remember that it is summer here in beautiful sunny southern California. With a population of near 4 million people living in Los Angeles proper, you can imagine the number of people you may find on a sunny So Cal beach. This means that once you get within, oh I’d say seven blocks of the ocean you’ll sit in a half hour’s worth of single lane, stop light-tastic traffic.  If you stop and try and park prior to that you’ll either be in a 2 hour metered spot, not worth it, or in neighborhood parking that requires a special permit…which of course I don’t have.  Assuming you haven’t given up and actually make it close to the beach you have a choice to make.  Santa Monica, the beach I was thinking of going to, is at the base of a cliff.  When it comes to parking, you can park on top of the cliff, hike down it using the staircase and bridges (which means you have to hike back up it at the end of the day) and then walk across what I can only describe as the Sahara Desert before you can even touch water.  The cost for this is free for 2 hours and then a max of $8 for the day.  Your other option is to skip the hike up and down the cliff and just park at sea level.  You pay $10 for the day and still have to walk across the Sahara Desert.  Plus, everyone on the planet knows about Santa Monica, making it a tourist trap, meaning good luck finding a spot on the beach that’s not somewhere behind a lifeguard tower.  You didn’t think you were actually going to get to sit by the water did you?

Back to the point.  I was feeling kind of lazy, and instead of going to the ocean just drove by it instead.  I took a nice trip up PCH (Pacific Coast Highway or Highway One, whichever you’d prefer) and every time I thought ‘I should probably turn around’ I just kept driving.  An hour or so later I found myself in Oxnard, which isn’t really that close to the water anymore and turned around and dove home.

On Monday I had dinner with friends, and they said “let’s go for a walk on the beach.”  Having not made it the day before I thought awesome! Now I’ll get to go to the beach! Well the driver had the same dilemma I’d had the day before – the beach is just so FAR and requires STOPPING.  We ended up doing another quick drive up PCH before turning back.

On Tuesday I saw a blog post about someone who went to the beach with her family and I knew I had to go and touch the water.  Of course this week is jammed full of events (like picking my friend Stella up from taking THE BAR!! – fingers crossed she passes) and making it to the beach just wasn’t going to happen.
On Saturday (after my week died down a bit) I was invited to travel down to Manhattan Beach and see a Volleyball Tournament.  I was instructed to wear a bathing suit, which in my mind means, I’m going to get to touch the water!  Unfortunately it didn’t work that way and we walked along the strand NEXT to the beach but never ON the beach let alone near the water.

Finally…FINALLY on Sunday I got to touch the water. I went out to lunch near Hermosa Beach, and afterwards we went all the way down and touched the ocean.  The water was just perfect.  Maybe next time I’ll get to swim in it!

Feet finally IN the ocean!

'nuf said

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