Saturday, July 12, 2008

Salty Dogs and Saragosa

Yesterday we hit the beach around 11:00, or so. Wow! We knew it was saragosa season but we had never seen it like this! The seaweed was was piled up several feet deep and several feet back, all along the shore. We noticed other people had shoveled paths so Camille and Jules went at it. They managed a narrow path which Jeff widened after he got our cabana set up.

We quickly became used to the seaweed smell and had a great day. The saragosa formed somewhat of a rainbow on the beach. It started off black, and then went several shades lighter until it reached the shore, where it was its usual golden color. The kids noticed how it decomposed.

So we had to wade through it to get to the water and then we had to swim in it, once in the water. But Jules loved it. Saragosa has tiny little seeds that are full of air so it floats along the surface of the water (it is fun to pop the bubbles). All sorts of sea critters take up refuge in the leaves that hang down into the water. Jules is my little marine biologist. He loves to get a bucket of salt water and then shake saragosa into it and then examine all of the sea life. Yesterday he saw many krill, shrimp, and fish. With the exception of the seaweed - the water was spectacular and clear. So the kids caught live sand dollars, hermit crabs, and even a snail in an olive shell. I haven't found an olive in ages. Of course, all were set free. Which reminds me: a few years ago Joel was surf fishing and Jules was swimming. Joel caught something that was really fighting, and Jules was out there trying to see what it was. Jeff saw it first, however, and yelled, "Dude! You caught a shark!" Jules had an alarming reaction. Let me just say that I know for a fact that Jesus isn't the only guy to walk on water :). Anyway, Joel posed for a picture with his shark and the entire time he was yelling, "Hurry! He's choking!" So yes, we're talking catch and release.
Jasper had a great time building roads and castles. The dogs had a great time destroying them.

The dogs had a good time, too. And I think the salt water is good for Schnitzel's wound. As soon as we took her bandage off earlier in the week (from her surgery) she yanked the stitches out. The vet said we could just let it heal - Schnitzel is vain but not that vain - don't think a scar will bother her. Anyway, so wading in the salt water seems to have made it look better. She'll be good as new by the end of today.

Everyone in the RV park wants to know what kind of a dog Ranger is. We are not seeing too many mutts around here :). One woman stopped me and said, "Oh! Is that a blah blah blah? We just ordered a blah blah blah from the breeder and he's coming next week." I told her we never ordered dogs, other people kindly deliver them for free at the end of our lane. Anyway, I have heard many varying opinions about what kind of dog he might be. I personally agree with Doc Glover, he is mostly Cow Dog. We should have named him Hank (after the Hank the Cowdog Series - if you have never listened to these tapes you are missing out on something special - the books are good but the tapes are better and they are read by the author). I personally love Cow Dogs. My Uncle Gene was a genuine (you have to make the "long i" sound when you say that) cowboy and rancher. He was over 6 feet tall and weighed next to nothing, what women would have called a long, tall drink of water. He always wore jeans, a button-up long sleeved shirt, boots, belt and of course....hat. And he was accompanied by his Cow Dog, named Son. Actually, that was not his full name. Son was the short version that was acceptible to use around us kids and a lot easier to holler. You can probably figure out the rest when you think about what female dogs are called and connect that to my uncle's propensity for the occasional salty expression uttered in frustration - often directed at Son, himself. I believe that Son had one blue eye and one brown...Ranger's are both kind of smoky colored. In the Hank books, Hank's owner is called Slim and talks an awful lot like my Uncle Gene.

Jeff spent a good part of the day helping the little ones with their boogie boards. I read. I'm still reading Drowning Ruth, which I'm finding to be a slow read. And I also started the latest Odd Thomas book by Dean Koontz. I love Odd Thomas. I usually get books from the library but I ordered this one from Amazon as soon as it came out. It is called Odd Hours. Odd Thomas is one of the most endearing characters Koontz has ever created. I just adore him. I laughed out loud several times yesterday, and then had to read to Ellie something Odd had said....

I was at the beach by 7:00 am, walking dogs. There are big front-end loaders and dump trucks trying to clear the seaweed, but it is piling up behind them. All my little brown kids are up, now, so I'd better get busy...I need to get some vegetarian chili going in the crock pot so we'll come home to dinner. Last night we went out for ice cream - maybe we'll have to do that again, tonight. Jeff, of course, ran into a doctor he knows at the ice cream shop. We never go ANYWHERE that he doesn't see somebody he knows through work. Even at Disneyland we ran into someone he used to work with. And of course, I love running into Jeff's colleagues while I am in a swimsuit with lovely beach hair :).

I'll try to post again, tomorrow!
Sardine Mama


  1. Could be worse you could run into Jeff's co-workers professionally.
    Me, lying in endoscopy room, yellow as an old drunk, O2 cannulas up my nose, IV in and I MUST engage the man with the Olympus shirt in conversation along with the gastroenterologist.
    'hey, do you know Jeff P. ?'....
    'oh, yeah he is a great guy. He has a lot of kids.'


  2. I'm assuming it was endoscopy and not colonoscopy? See how things could have been even more uncomfortable? Both physically and emotionally :)Jeff wants to know what the guy looked like, what facility you were using....he didn't care even slightly about what you were doing there. Hardened and desensitized to both spasming sphincters and alarming gag reflexes...

  3. With my luck, when the day comes to have a colonoscopy Jeff will be there! :P

    It was back in Dec 2006 when my gall bladder went belly up. Dr. Allende. Downtown Baptist. No clue what the Olympus guy's name was. Young, handsome..of course. It's never the old, fat, smelly ones who see you at your worst.

    I do have the pleasant memories of the procedure as being the lucky gal that I am, uber amounts of Versed do nothing to me.