My last day with the grandchildren was bitter sweet (as it always is). On the way to taking Savannah to school “Mama” decided to take everyone to Santa Barbara instead. This was a hugely popular idea and spirits were high, until … Mama broke the news that this would be Grama’s last day. Quiet settled over the children and then the tears began to fall … no sounds … just tears. Well, it didn’t take long before Mama and Grama were having trouble with tears too. A stop for mid-morning snacks helped calm everyone down and soon talk of the beach lifted everyone’s spirits!
When we arrived at the Santa Monica beach we were surprised to see the damage the recent tsunami in Japan had caused on the coast of California! No longer a long, smooth transition from the grassy knoll to the water’s edge, the sand now had a 4′ drop about 6 feet from the edge of the grass. The children found it an added “bonus” … fun to slide down and even more fun to try and climb. We romped and played for several hours, writing our names in the wet sand, using found objects as light reflectors to send secret messages to the pirates on the ships floating in nearby water (for surely they were pirate ships, the children insisted), and chasing the water.
As the morning drew to a close and bellies began to grumble Mama helped us find a nearby Chipotle’s Mexican Restaurant where we ate till we were full. Then, after a nice walk (which included some ‘exploration’ along the side streets of Santa Monica) the children were all buckled into their car seats and we began our journey back home. As the children slept, we enjoyed some quiet adult conversation and made plans for the remaining hours of my visit. The last day is always a challenge … trying to make the best use of our time and working hard to avoid thinking about the inevitable.
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