The theme of this New Year's Day is "unseasonably warm." I'm compelled on most January 1's to kick off my year with clean closets, an organized desk, a long list of unattainable goals and a vow to approach it with zen-like wellness...........but on this January 1, it's over 50 degrees and the sun is shining. A rare commodity in winter. So I ditch my plans to overhaul my life and head to the beach instead.
Per usual, Liam whines and complains when I interrupt his Looney Tunes marathon to tell him that we're going to the beach. I try to ignore but finally lose it when he demands to know exactly how long we'll be there: "Will it be 30 minutes? Will it be longer than 30 minutes? More or less than 30 minutes? If it's longer than 30 minutes, I will definitely hate it."
At which point, I spin around Linda Blair-style and say:
"I DON'T CARE! I DON'T CARE IF YOU HATE THE BEACH! DON'T YOU UNDERSTAND THAT? HATE IT ALL YOU WANT BUT YOU DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO RUIN IT FOR ME! STOP RUINING IT FOR ME!"
He hides his face in his hands and I say more quietly, "Stop ruining it for me."
He remains quietly contrary until he makes his first discovery, a bike reflector tangled in seaweed. This is how it goes. He expertly makes us miserable until the myriad discoveries are just too interesting to resist. It goes like this every single time. Every. Single. Time. We repeat this story over and over and over; you'd think he'd retain some memory of the fun he had the last 92 times he didn't want to come to the beach.
But his need to protest this place persists even 18 months after our move.
After the bike reflector, he finds giant clam shells completely intact and a variety of dismembered crab body parts including something he insists is a "crab butt." Plus, we find a tiny snail leaving a trail in the sand reaching an amazing 20 feet behind him. He was only a 1/4" long! How long must it have taken him to go 20 feet?! We all say "It's Gary!" and start meowing - which is only funny to those of you who will admit to watching Spongebob.
But most importantly, Liam finally finds the thing that has eluded him on every single one of our visits to the beach, the holy grail of beach finds:
So tomorrow I will clean up the Christmas mess and organize my life and get a new 2012 calendar. Because today is unseasonably warm.
Happy New Year......