Monday, July 28, 2008

Romantic Enchantic Atlantic

I had never seen the ocean...nope...not ever in all of my years had I been to the beach and seen the glorious crashing waves of briny blue.

This may seem unfathomable to some, but I was raised in New Mexico, and we spent many a day playing in the pure beach-esque white dunes of White Sands, but hence, it is a desert and landlocked, therefore no shores.

I have seen Lake Superior whose horizon appears, like the ocean, to have no end, and it has a beautiful lighthouse similar to those found on coastal shores. I have been in New York Harbor, but that is basically just a river, not the real McCoy. I have also seen rivers big (some may doubt the vastness of the Rio Grande--but I have seen the Mississippi, the Potomac, the Hudson) and small, and spent time on frozen lakes in northern Minnesota and in thawed lakes in Alberta, Canada where my Grandma lives.

I have clambered up the slippery edges of the Athabasca Glacier in Jasper National Park (also in Alberta), and peered down the bottomless blue fissures in the slowly drifting slab.

I crossed the Tropic of Capricorn every Monday for seven months of my missionary service while going from Barueri to Santana de Parnaíba--São Paulo, Brasil to attend missionary district meetings.

Brasil--now you are saying, what is wrong with you? How can you have been to that glorious tropical paradise whose vast shores are as long as the United States is wide and never seen the ocean? Yes--I know. But as a missionary we had certain regions where we lived and worked and our work was continuous for the entire two years, therefore, a getaway to the beach wasn't exactly on the agenda--but I assure you, I will go back, and I will frolic on those Atlantic shores...

...but today...several thousand miles to the Northwest of that beloved country Brasil, in a little place called Long Beach, NY along the Atlantic Coast (also about an hour by train from where I live in the city, much like when I lived in São Paulo)

...I saw the ocean for the first time.

I was thrilled.

I frolicked.

And I was not disappointed.

And my boyhood dream of finding shells along the shores was fulfilled and passed on to become a tangible experienced for my own little boy.

What a glorious experience! This beach was recommended by a friend who surfs here in New York--I never would have thought that surfing was a thing to do here, but alas, this parallel universe is full of surprises.

And I will let Brecken fill you in on the rest of our fun day at the beach...


Ms. Reasor said...

Beautiful Justin. Really. Its straight from a movie...that you're writing right? That's what I thought. How poetic. Really. I'm not even joking. I am thrilled to have read it.

charrette said...

Wonderful Post. So well-written, and the imagery --equally eloquent.

Congratulations on finally making it to the ocean! There is nothing quite like those mesmerizing waves. I remember so vividly taking Josh (as a toddler) to see the sunrise over the shore in 5 am! It had this incredible impact on us both. He still remembers, still talks about it.

Doesn't it just take your breath away!

Rachel said...

Way to frolic, my friend. Your beach pictures remind me of Mitt Romney in his bid for the Massachusetts Governor's spot...

Tammy Lorna said...

Justin Justin Justin :)

I remember laughing at you the first time you told me you'd never seen the ocean. I thought you were joking! And then, when I realized that you weren't, I laughed even harder! What a terrible friend I am!

I guess growing up, the beach was to me what mountains are to people in Utah, so I just had a hard time imagining it :) It was like finding a kid who'd never seen lightbulbs, or cheese, or movies! But then I visited New Mexico, and I understood... And I cried for all the children who grew up in New Mexico... hah!

BUT I really LOVED this post, and I'm so pleased you finally got to see it :) Your frolicking pictures have made me laugh all over again!

Isn't life wonderful? Always full of new things left to discover!

xo Tammy

PS. But seriously, you haven't seen beaches till you've seen the beaches here in QLD... Can't wait till you all come to visit... :)

James & Abby said...

Hi Brecken & Justin!
It's Tammy's sister Abby - we only met once when I was staying with Tamster in Provo (we played a hilarious game full of movie impersonations by Justin) but since Tammy showed me a few of your blog entries to show off her favourite toddler I'm probably one of your biggest blog-site fans! :)
Usually I keep quiet but I'm so excited that you finally saw the ocean!!! I'm so happy for you that you got to frolick, and I just thought I'd let you know that you're all going to LOVE the surf here on the Gold Coast when you make it here :)
Your blogs always make me smile Brecken :)
Abby xo

Marsdinis said...

Congrats, Justin. The question," when did you first see the ocean?" is in Marissa's baby book, and the book only goes to age 5 so I guess most people see it by then...better late then never:)

Kevin said...

Splendid, Justin, splendid. I hope you didn't get water up your nose - that salt makes it worse than normal water. Congratulations on fulfilling your dream!