2018-04-01 / Features

Working up an appetite for peaks of perfection and waves of delight

I have always thought of myself as a mountain girl. I still do, truth be told.

But in the past year, since moving to this area, I have discovered it is possible to be both a mountain girl and a beach girl.

The latter identity is one

I had never seriously considered before packing up and heading south, because I am not really a wet-stuff kind of person. I am hardpressed to keep my head above water under the best of circumstances. Plus, I don’t tan well. And humid, windy days style my locks into “beach hair” frizz. Also, I don’t do beach volleyball – something other beachtype people should be relieved about since my appearance in the requisite volleyball regalia for girls would surely spoil someone’s holiday, rather than enhance it.

All those negatives aside, I recently found myself looking forward to the return of the beach weather everyone imagines enjoying when they head to the Gulf. When I caught myself in the midst of one such daydream, I began to wonder why a longtime mountain lover should be so excited at the prospect.

These are the reasons I gave myself for relishing time near the water as a newly attuned beach lover. * Simple picnics taste delish on the beach, even if the treats are a little gritty sometimes.

* The sight of blue-green water kissing white sands with frothy enthusiasm stirs something within me that breaks out on my face in a mile-wide smile.

* Cold drinks “fizz” even better when consumed on the beach.

* The sound of children laughing as they dare the waves to tickle their tiny tippy toes just makes me glad to be alive.

* Tasty stuff comes out of the sea and into the frying pan so easily in a lovely bow to an upcoming dinner.

* Sails shimmering across the water make me feel lazy and peaceful.

* Staking out space on the beach obligates a person to eat something crunchy and salty out of a beach tote at least once every hour.

* Birds doing the “head bob strut” up and down the sand bring on a grin every time I see them.

* Sweet stuff consumption is a basic obligation for everyone on the beach.

* Some beach bodies make me remember, longingly, the days when I had one. Others reassure me the one I have now could be worse – if only by a wee bit. * When the cooler and picnic hamper are empty, there is always another source of—you guessed it— food. Close by. Thank heavens for beach bars and grills.

* Kites dip and sway in the most fascinating way when the wind skims across the water and accepts the challenge to make them dance.

* A full tummy makes drifting off into napland, lulled by the sun, the splash and the smell of saltwater and coconut-tanged sunscreen such a pleasant prospect.

* People-watching takes on a whole new dimension of hilarity when those people you are spying on through the tint of sunglasses are walking on shifting sand or playing tag with the surf.

* Did I mention the fact that food is basic to beach life?

And now you know. I will always feel my heart’s home is in the green and hazy mountains, but the beach beckons and beguiles my senses in totally new and fascinating ways, as well.

I suppose, when it comes right down to it, I am just hungry for both.

Bon appétit, all you beach folks.

And y’all, too, mountaineers.

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