Let me tell you this, though- there's NOTHING better than an immaculate sky, a crashing surf, ten of your best friends, AND Jesus (well, there was that one awesome week back in March, but for right now's purposes, just pretend I didn't swear then that nothing was better than Spring Break, which was really, really wonderful.) So, as I guess you've gathered despite that long, unfortunate case of parenthesis, I went to the beach last weekend. With my friends. More specifically, on a church retreat, which means we asked God to meet us there, and He surely did show up, people!
Can I tell you how it went down? No matter how many pictures I show you or how many synonyms of "awesome" I use to describe it, you won't get it, but because I'd like to remember this some day when I've forgotten, I will try my best.
I made a pit stop in Prattville for a night on Thursday, and that was just plain lovely. The real fun started Friday morning though, when Janie and I woke up earlier than we should've and put on our bathing suits and made ham sandwiches and and headed south with thoughts of sunbathing and sea salt dancing in our heads. We took THE most confusing route ever, but Stella, our conveniently-nearly-dead nav system, was a champ, and eventually, sunshine became a real deal possibility.
(notice effective use of the self timer yet again.)
What happened after that was pretty sweet: we went to a CVS and bought sunscreen and floaties and then we made a beeline to the sand. We laid down towels and we stayed that way for four hours, until we got thirsty. So, Internet, do you want to know what we did? We walked and walked- down the BEACH in the OCEAN- until we came to a nice hut that was not so hut like but more restaurant like and we sat ourselves down like we were adults and ordered something fruity and frozen that came with whipped cream and a cherry! Right there on the beach! Like we were actually adults! They called us ma'ms!
Some of us liked our fruity concoctions better than others, I guess.
So that was a nice, relaxing day and that is sort of where our pictures end because someone who is extra clumsy may or may not have dropped the camera (Sorry, Janie! I'll do what I can to rectify that!). But let me give you a recap our of Friday night. You will be jealous with a capital JEAL and a capital OUS.
8:30 p.m.: Feel certain that, after 3 hours of sleep, we may not make it past 9 p.m. This is a problem. Go to Starbucks.
10:00 p.m.: Participate in awe-inspiring worship.
11:30 p.m.: Be persuaded by friends to take a midnight walk on the beach.
12:00 a.m.: Arrive at suite 516 to pick up boys for midnight walk. Run out of gas.
12:10 a.m.: Decide that the BEST method of action would not be to get another car and drive to the gas station or even to walk to the gas station; no, the BEST action would be for 12 people to push the car to the gas station, crossing a 6 lane highway in the process.
12:15-12:22 a.m.: Follow above procedure.
12:30 a.m.: Wildly celebrate our success.
12:45a.m.- 1:30 a.m.: Hang out on the beach amid some confusion about who is there and who isn't. Decide to go home. But alas! There are 11 people! And one car! One five-passenger- two- door car! WHAT TO DO?
1:30 a.m.: Pile 11 people in said car. Rather uncomfortably.
1:32 a.m.: Get pulled over by kind, amused, albeit taken aback, cop who insists that while he pulled us over for a missing headlight, we indeed must all climb out of the car, where he proceeds to count (one, two, three...ELEVEN? ELEVEN PEOPLE?). He lets us go if we promise to take multiple trips to get everyone home.
2:00 a.m.: Sweet dreams about the most wonderful friends on this whole planet.
Because I realize this is quite possibility winning me an award for longest blog post ever, I will wrap it up: There was spaghetti and splotchy sunburn and sand in places that sand shouldn't be and beach walks and-best of all- and incredible message on what it means to walk with God. There was one on one conversation and kneeling and healing with the creator of the universe. There were tears and hugs and the resewing of bonds that had been tattered by busy lives. I'd like to challenge the rest of 2010 to show me a better weekend, thank you very much.
*I almost forgot! The mystery of the missing underwear! I managed to lose EIGHT pairs of underwear. Now, I realize that eight is a lot of underwear to bring to a weekend getaway; call me paranoid, but I like to be prepared (my defense is that you usually shower a lot at the beach...). Anywho, I dumped out all of this underwear on the floor in a hurry and used the bag as my beach bag. Later, everything else was there EXCEPT my underwear. Right there where I left it. Except beds were made up and towels had been collected- and my underwear was MISSING. We searched under beds and in the closets and truthfully, I thought it would show up in one of our bags, but the bags have been unpacked and I am still missing eight pairs of underwear it. If you see them, tell them I'm looking for them.