Monday, October 19, 2009

Vacation part 3

Once we arrived in Brighton it was only about a 5 minute walk to the ocean. It was a warm yet blustery day but I was still rather surprised at how empty the beach was when we got there. (This must be because at any given time of the year the beach across the street from my house is always over run with people no matter what the weather.) (ok, not so much when it's raining but that's not very often.)

Even though IMOM warned us that the beaches were full of rocks and pebbles I wasn't prepared to see this when we got there:



I thought that once we waded through the soft piles of pebbles that it would be hard wet sand the closer we got to the water....I was sadly mistaken:



IMOM was wearing dress shoes and long pants, (I think he did that on purpose), so he didn't elect to trudge through the pebbles with us. He did a quick retreat and found a sidewalk cafe. We were going to give him our purses and back packs but he was too fast for us. (I think he did that on purpose, too!)

The main reason we wanted to go to the beach was to look for sea glass. IMOM had never heard of such madness and he truly thought that I was making it up. When I told him that not only did I not make it up by I subscribed to a sea glass newsletter then he really thought I had lost my mind. He said that he couldn't think of a more tedious, boring or fruitless hobby. We all told him, "fine", and then we told him that we wouldn't share any of our booty with him! So for the next couple of hours Tori, Bek and I slowly walked along the uneven terrain of the shore in a half hunch to which only other sea glass explorers can relate. I've never searched for sea glass on a beach that had so much green moss or sea weed. The sea weed in California is brown and dull and doesn't resemble glass. Green sea glass looks quite a bit like green moss so there were a lot of false alarms but in the end we wound up with enough bits and pieces to make it worth our trip.

Here is Tori doing her best "Aztec Sun Tan Dance". (Please tell me if you recognize that reference or not...)

Another odd contrast to Orange County beaches is the height of the beach showers. The ones in the OC are very tall so that you can stand under them and wash your hair or get the sand out of your wet suit.. and there is also a much lower outlet in case you just want to rinse off your feet. Well apparently in England the showers are for rinsing off your mid-section or legs. Too bad for you if you have sand in your hair:



The people we saw at the beach that day were in various states of dress:


I am fully dressed while the kids behind me frolic in their undies.

Here is a Muslim family. The dad and one son are in bathing suits and one son and the daughter are wearing soccer uniforms. What you can't see is that the daughter, who is partially blocked by her brother, is wearing a soccer outfit and a pink turtle neck sweater. Oddly, mom's bathing suit looks just like her Sunday go to meetin' clothes or her sweats and tee shirts:

Tori took this picture of the artsy striped chairs. I don't even know if she knows she caught the honeymooners in the back ground.



Annnnd.... I've seen a lot of purchased cleavage at the beach but I have to say that none compared to this:



This is Tori and Rebekah sitting on a jetty type wall. You should have seen the rigmarole that took place in trying to get Tori up on to the wall. It is moments like this that remind us that we are no longer 18:



We could have searched for sea glass all day but we knew we were on a limited time budget so we took a walk on the boardwalk. There were many more people up there than there were on the beach. (It's just too dang hard to try to walk on all of those rocks.)

I'm not sure what this sign was for but I liked the pictures:

We checked in with IMOM at his sidewalk cafe. He encouraged us to eat lunch with him but there was a huge problem. His sidewalk cafe didn't serve diet Coke. And they didn't have any vegetarian options. So Bek and I went to the cafe right next door where they did have diet Coke and veggie burgers and we scooted our table up next to the fence and dined with Tori and IMOM like we always ate our meals with a fence dividing us.


When our appetites were sated and our backs were rested we resumed our walk. Imagine our surprise when we discovered you could buy G-Strings from a gum ball machine~




This was the biggest G-String I have ever seen!

This is a pregnant young woman all painted blue and wrapped in blue tulle. I'm not sure what she was supposed to be but she stood perfectly still holding a metal plate with cotton friendship bracelets on it. People would put money on her tray and then just take a bracelet. I hope she finds a better means of support when her baby gets here.

Some of the other things we saw on the boardwalk but I'm not posting pictures: a one man band, a marionette puppet show, 2 great danes up for adoption, cardboard cut outs where you stick your face in the cut out and take pictures, a penny casino and the longest line I've ever stood in to use a public restroom. (Coffee at breakfast, drinks on the train, drinks at lunch and the roar of the ocean. I thought I was going to die! I seriously thought about going to the front of the line and offering money for their spot!)

This beautiful piece of architecture is "The Grand". This picture does it no justice for it is truly a magnificent building inside and out. After our long day of searching for sea glass and going to the pier arcade, walking along the board walk and eating ice cream we wound up in here:
. The 3 of us were really looking forward to sitting at the elegant bar and shooting the breeze with a jolly old English bar tender. Of course our bartender from was Florida. We sat at the bar for a couple of hours where we ate snacks and drank adult beverages. (yay for vanilla vodka and diet Coke!) When it was time to go we all kind of headed off like amoebas. Everyone went in a different direction. First one of us had to go find a restroom and everyone else waited... then by the time the first person got back someone else had to go. Then we had to stop and address and mail post cards and then we had to buy souvenirs. I think at this point we had gone back to the bar and had an other drink.

We finally got out of The Grand and headed back to the train station. I have no idea how we didn't notice this on the way to the beach but it wasn't until we were on our way back that I saw the sign for St. Paul's Cathedral. It looked like any other building on the block until you got inside:
This was just one of the many stained glass windows. As far as cathedrals go this one pretty small but it was very old and simply beautiful. We had to catch our train so we really couldn't linger....Annnnddddd.....of course when we got to the train station we just missed our train by 2 seconds. By then I had to go to the bathroom again but we couldn't get off the the platform because we already put our tickets in to the turnstile. When our train got there we weren't certain that we were on the right train but I told them that if we weren't then I'd some how take a taxi to London because I was off on a hunt for a potty and couldn't be bothered with the petty details of whether or not the train I was on was going in the right direction. I had to go about 10 train cars up before I found a restroom and lo and behold, there with the door wide open was a man in mid pee. "Good job, Dude! Jeez, close the door!", I said as I went past the door. "The door's broken.", peeing dude said. I went through a few more cars before I decided that I, too would use the potty with the broken door. At that point I didn't care anymore. However when I got to that potty...turns out I did care! So I walked all the way back down to the car we were riding in and went beyond it and I finally found a working bathroom.
Once I was able to finally sit in my seat and just relax...a couple of other people came and sat down next to us. All of a sudden this dreadful, pungent smell wafted over to our seats...waft...waft... How could those people not realize that a tom-cat had sprayed on their luggage? Somehow it didn't seem to bother them even a little bit. I wish we could have said the same.

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6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

We had so much fun! I love reading about our adventures!!
Tori

7:05 PM  
Blogger Tami W. said...

I've often thought that I should start all of my postings:
"Dear Tori,"....

12:02 PM  
Blogger Kathy said...

New blog name :)

So is sea glass pieces of glass that have been battered by the ocean and get a little cloudy? We found a bit in San Clemente this summer I think...

9:37 PM  
Blogger Tami W. said...

Kathy,

Yes, sea glass is bits and pieces of glass that have been battered by the ocean and turn opaque and get smooth around the edges.. it comes in few colors; clear/white, aqua blue, green, brown and on very rare occasion there is red. You might think this is stupid but once you start looking for it...it's addicting.

9:08 AM  
Blogger Kathy said...

No, actually, Shelby has a little collection of it that we have found on our walks on the beach in San Clemente. To her, they are jewels. I like the greeny/blue the best. We could sit there for hours sifting through - who wouldn't in San Clemente? :)

9:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's the dance you should do when it's sunny

grab your toe and pull it toward your tummy

put your hand on your knee and hop-hop-hop like a big bunny

NOW YOU'RE DOING THE AZTEC SUN TAN DANCE!

8:28 PM  

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