The Outsider and the family he met in Daytona Beach

A Day at the Beach

State: Florida

I woke up feeling refreshed from another good night’s sleep. After I did some much needed Yoga, I felt loose, relaxed, and ready for what was turning into a beautiful day.

Shortly after this thought, Michelle and the kids emerged from the house.

“I’m going to makes some eggs. Do you want some?” Michelle asked.

“Sure, thank you,” I said smiling.

Michelle then collected some eggs from the chicken coup and I realized I’d be getting a farm fresh breakfast.

Awhile later, Michelle came out with a beautiful spread of over easy eggs, fruits, papaya, water with lemon, and coffee.

“I think I may have put too much honey in the coffee,” she said.

“Not possible,” I said and we laughed because I told her the way I order coffee is by saying “When you think it’s too much sugar, put a little more.”

After I ate the wonderful breakfast Michelle made, me and the kids began a game of human ring toss. The object of the game was to get a hula hoop around the person from a distance. Jojo ended up winning.

When Jason got up, a trip to the beach was put into the works and after a few more hours of rallying the troops and getting supplies, we were off!

We ended up at Ponce Inlet and unloaded the car and the kids. I grabbed the cooler full of snacks. Jason put on a backpack baby carrier and put the baby in it and Michelle began documenting everything with her camera.

“We’re like a gorilla troop. We got papa silverback right there (referring to Jason’s dreds), mama keeping a close eye on things, and the rest of the little monkeys,” I said and we all laughed.

We came to an offshoot path which lead to the beach, however, a knee-deep water inlet needed to be crossed.

“Does anyone want to go around?” Jason asked.

“Nah,” everyone answered and we crossed.

The beach was awesome. Once we were on it, we all took off our shoes and left them to keep hiking on the beach (I went back for mine, since they are my only pair).

We let loose Jeshy (the dog), who went to say hi to a lot of other dogs along the way as it was a dog beach. We watched this old man throw a stick for his yellow lab, into the water and laughed as the dog flew in after it making a mighty splash in the process.

After we hiked a while longer, around the mangroves and farther down the beach, we had it to ourselves.

The kids dove in and I wasn’t far behind because it was a perfect day for swimming.

“Hey throw me!” Elijah said.

I launched him into the air and he splashed and popped back up laughing. I then had a line form to be tossed.

We then ate some snacks and then hiked a bit further down the beach. Most of us hid in the mangroves to try to surprise Michelle, but Niah who was walking with Michelle saw us.

“Hi!” she said.

“Hiiii!” we all said back.

Then me and Jojo set to making a sand castle. She showed me the best way to mix the dry and wet sand.

“You make the moat and I’ll make the bridge,” she said.

I dug all around the castle and watched as Jojo made an awesome bridge out of sticks and sand. Our castle was more of an island, but I think it looked pretty good.

Elijah then challenged me to a swim around the corner of the beach. I gave him a 10 second head start, but caught up to him.

“What’s up little man?” I asked while swimming to pace him.

“How are you so fast?” he asked.

“You remember trying on my backpack?” I asked.

“Oh yeah,” he said and laughed thinking of the weight.

We returned to the beach and after gathering everything up, began the trek back to the car. Michelle got a lot of great pictures and Jeshy was still running figure 8s.

On the way through the offshoot path, the water had gotten deeper. So I threw Matthias and Jojo on each shoulder and we crossed.

We loaded up and drove a car of happy sleeping kids back to the house. A great addition to my fortune of memories of this trip.

A day I got to spend with a family who were strangers only a short time ago.

Forever your friend,

~The Outsider

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