I wake up confused. What time is it? Why is it so bright in my room?
I can’t see the clock but the light seems as bright as the noon-day sun. Is it noon?
I keep my eyes closed, reluctant as ever to get out of bed. I have never been a fan of getting out of bed. (Is that bad?)
Finally, I stretch over to reach my phone so I can see the time. Sometimes it’s only 7:21 a.m.; other times it’s 9:23 a.m. I can’t tell the difference. I’m weary no matter the hour.
I’m in Southern California now and the sun sets earlier than in Seattle, but during the day, the sun shines with endless cheer. It’s weird for a Pacific Northwest girl to have so much bright light all the time.
Don’t get me wrong. I love it. It’s just so different.
Yesterday, my daughter and I met a blogging friend (Carrien of She Laughs at the Days) at the park. Carrien (pronounced “Careen” not “Carry-en” as I’ve been pronouncing it in my head for years) and her four adorable children was running late. I had decided that she either chickened out or got lost or was simply running late. After all, four kids, including a baby. Haven’t we all been there?
So, she arrived. The children played and we chatted–it’s always kind of strange to meet a blogging friend in real life–they already know some of your stories and they remember things about you that you don’t remember yourself. After exploring some trails, we all came back to my house to have lunch. It was fun to have a house full of kids–eight kids between just the two of us. Carrien herself was lovely and showed me on a map a bunch of important destinations: good pizza, good thrift stores and the local YMCA.
In the late afternoon, my daughter and I took the twins to their first music lessons here. After we delivered them to the music studios, we walked down the street to the Carlsbad Visitor Center where we picked up brochures. Then we walked another block and served ourselves frozen yogurt with do-it-yourself toppings. It felt like twenty minutes of vacation. And then we had to pick up the boys.
We delivered them at home and picked up 13-year old Zach and returned to Carlsbad to go to the beach. We drove up and down the shore and finally found a good parking spot. We walked down a trail that looked like a gully created by a rushing flood of water and emerged on the beach.
The sun glowed low in the sky as we walked down to an empty spot of shore. I stood up to my knees in the waves, watching the kids for awhile before deciding to boogie board, too. Why not? Life is too short and all that.
The kids were shocked, I think. We had fun. At some point, I abandoned the board and simply jumped in the waves as the sun sank lower and lower on the horizon.
We watched the last sliver of sun sink below the border of waves and sky.
“That was the first time I ever saw the sun set,” Zach said.
It will not be the last. I love spending those last moment of light watching the sun glow and slide out of sight.