Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The pitfalls of a good beach read

These are the Playground Monitor's feet lounging on the beach on St. Simon's Island, Georgia. Today was the first day I've been able to hit the beach, and for a couple reasons it might be the last day I get there.

First, my mom was released from the hospital late yesterday afternoon and she's doing very well. She improves each day and gets a little bit stronger. It will take time, but the doctor said there's no reason she can't make a full recovery. So now that I have her home, I'll be playing Nurse Marilyn instead of bopping all over the island and lounging on the beach.

Second, I kinda sorta let the time get away from me today and I'm a little sunburned. And why did I kinda sorta let the time get away from me today?

The answer is simple: a good beach read. The photos are horrible, I know. Bottom-of-the-line cellphones don't take good photos, but it's all I have. You can't tell it by the photo, but the book in my chair is one that was mentioned in the comments of last Thursday's blog.

When I was packing for my trip, I searched for several books to bring along because I knew I'd have lots of reading time. Because of the blog last week I'd hunted down a used copy of Shades of Twilight and decided to pack it.

It went to the beach with me today along with my jug of ice water, my sunscreen, my beach chair, towel and hat and my barbeque sandwich from The Beachcomber.

I got so involved in the story of Roanna Davenport and Webb Tallant that I (1) missed the big car carrier that traveled by the beach on its way from the port at Brunswick to who-knows-where, (2) forgot to reapply sunscreen, (3) lost complete track of time which caused me to get pretty pink from the aforementioned lack of sunscreen and (4) missed Matthew McConnaughey, Daniel Craig, George Clooney, Hugh Jackman and Gerard Butler frolicking nude in the surf.

Just kidding about number 4.

A good book has that effect on you -- it makes you stop paying attention to your surroundings and lose yourself completely in the world the author creates. Be it a couple in an old Alabama mansion, a Navy SEAL on a mission in the middle east, a bodyguard keeping tabs on a reporter in Boston, a CEO seeking revenge on his ex-wife or a Regency era rake and the object of his affections, they all exert a power that if harnessed could light the world, just like my sunburn is probably going to glow in the dark tonight.

Combine that book with the beach and... Riddle me this: what is it about the beach and a good book? What are your favorite beach reads?

P.S. I saved a place for you on the beach today but you never showed up. Maybe next time.


Rhonda said...

Last year I took Jennifer St. Giles THE MISTRESS OF TREVELYN to the beack and loved it.

PM, glad to hear that your mother is doing better!

Problem Child said...

Great pictures. I'm jealous.

I love to sit on the beach and read. Don't know why--it's one of the few times I like to be outdoors, though.

Smarty Pants said...

I wish I could read at the beach, but your sunburn is exactly why I can't. Or if I do, it must involve a large umbrella, a gallon of 45, a hat, sunglasses and a beachtowel to throw over any part of me that might get exposed to the sun. Too much trouble.

Jen said...

Confession time -- I can't read at the beach. The beach itself is too distracting/fascinating. I want to walk in the edge of the water, comb the shore for bits of shell, throw a frisbee, lose myself in the sound of the waves. And then there are the other people there that I have to watch....

Glad you had a good time, however, and I'm so glad your mom is doing well with a good prognosis.

Instigator said...

That's what I hated most about being sick at the beach this year!! I couldn't go read on the beach (because the sun, sand and wind hurt my puffy and swollen eyes. Not to mention the streaming tears down my face made the pages a little hard to see).

I have too many favorite beach reads to name them all but I distinctly remember reading Karyn Robards Scandalous last year and loving it.

I'm so glad your mother is doing better, PM! Give her our love and hope for a speedy recovery.


Playground Monitor said...

I think I'd put up with the hat, umbrella, towel, 45 and all to be able to read at the beach. Though I do admit to being distracted too, it's so relaxing with the breeze and the sounds of the surf and the birds.

And then there's Matthew, Daniel, George, Hugh and Gerard frolicking. ::grin::

Rhonda said...

Someday I'll learn to spell. That's "beach" not "beack."


Kathy said...

Gerard at the beach? Where?

Oh, don't tease!

We are two of a kind, PM. I went to the tanning bed yesterday to prepare for my beach trip and got burned, front and back. Ouch! Don't remember ever getting this red there before.

Now if the DH's back would heal (he had a cyst removed last Friday and now has a big whole in his back) and the burn would heal, we just might enjoy ourselves next week. I'm packing as many books as I can. Hopefully, the romance won't keep me from a good read. (Wink)

So glad to hear your Mom is home!


Angel said...

Glad you had fun, PM, and that your Mom is doing well enough to come home.

I can't read at the beach. Someone has to make sure the kids don't drown. Growing up in Florida panhandle, people think I love the beach, but I actually hate it. Give me a pool any day.

I only enjoy the beach in winter, when I can walk along a deserted one and stare out over the water. No one expects me to get in. :)

Playground Monitor said...

Someone has to make sure the kids don't drown.

Beach reading has definitely been an empty nest activity. I did my share of child-watching too.

I love walking on the beach any time. It's so peaceful. I never swim in the ocean; I only walk so my feet are in the surf.