Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The sun is a ball of flaming gas

My body is a ball of flaming skin.

Second-degree sunburns aside, it was a good family reunion. We sat in traffic for about four hours (at least the way there the traffic was moving the whole time) and got rained out of the water a few times, but we watched tiny little clams burrowing into the sand (did you know they do that? It was so cool!) and chased waves and got chased by waves and I held hands with my nephews as we braved the ocean and sat on the beach watching the Blue Angels air show.

I'm pretty sure we all wanted to be fighter pilots after that.

The lightning and the traffic, however, were not my biggest problem. The much bigger issue was that my swimsuit, which gets a lot of pool time but not much else, was clearly dying. You know what that means. The top struggled to stay up; fortunately, most of the flashing happened in deep enough water that no one got too much of a peep show.

I think.

I am not going to share the rest of my suit's death throes; you'll have to bribe a family member for that.

We finally made it to Cock of the Walk that night, which only sounds dirty. There were fried pickles. And fried crayfish/crawfish/crawdad tails. (Are those the same thing?) That confirmed the prevailing hypothesis that anything tastes good when it's fried.

Sunday we went canyaking. The parents, the tots and Rachel opted for canoes; Josh and I went kayaking. (Just as a side note, if you ever have this option, choose the kayak. It's smaller, easier to maneuver, closer to the water and just a lot more fun. Canoes are like sedans. A kayak is like a stick shift that goes fast and hugs curves.)

Speaking of stick shifts, getting into mine was such a relief after six days of driving this massive Chrysler that was missing a pedal. Why do people drive automatic cars? They're missing all the fun.

Anyway, the river. At one little sandbar I took the nephews out in my kayak; they sat up front, then on the back, then on my lap and tried to row. Then they just just kicked me out of the kayak and the 4-year-old started paddling. Had his arms been a little longer, the two of them would have beat us down the river.

There was an airport snafu (bad weather somewhere), a Phase 10 battle of epic proportions (Rachel won, Mom accused us of cheating — even though I have such an innocent face) and an early morning run in which I did not get soaked in the first 10 seconds of rain.

Oh, how I missed that. Humidity is just not fun. I grew up in the desert and went to school in farmland and then moved to the desert, so days when the humidity is 25 percent I feel like I'm breathing cotton. Running in that stuff was hard.

Skin color after beach -- Skin color before beach
As was not getting hosed by the sun god. SPF 50, dang it! I applied it. Liberally. With the express intention of not turning the same color as the wall behind my desk. Either I did not put it on often enough, or I didn't wait long enough before getting back into the water, or my European skin tone is just too pale for sunscreen and I should not expose skin that never sees sunlight to direct sunlight for five straight hours.

The trip ended with the reality that in one week, I will be running a marathon. One week! Except now it's only six days, and it's technically on Tuesday morning so it's pretty much five days, and I am freaking out. 26 miles is a long way. I'm pretty sure this is dumber than angering the sun god turned out to be.


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