My wife loves going to the beach. She loves the constant, steady pounding of the waves onto the shore. She loves the gentle but ever present breeze, blowing inland during parts of the day, blowing out to the ocean in the evenings. She loves the power of Mother Nature when storms at sea pass by without coming on shore. It is like a magnificent movie, produced by God with tremendous clouds and incredible lightning. Beaches are a favorite of my wife, for sure. At Myrtle Beach, we stay at Ocean Lakes in sections close to the beach so we can hear the tides while we sleep. We walk down to the ocean in the early morning to watch the sun rise. We walk from one pier to another on the beach, covering 10 miles. It is a time to walk, which is good for your health. It is a time to hold hands and talk with your love, which is good for your soul. On those beaches, Teresa and I have plotted and planned our retirement plans. Originally, I would retire in 2017 but plans had to change when my dad fell in 2012. We talked and planned how we could move up our plans to where I would retire in December 2012. But it was on those long walks we made our plans.In Florida, the beaches on the East Coast around Fort Lauderdale surprised us as they had been torn up from winter storms. Waves were harmfully pounding into the sea walls at the beachfront homes. There was so very little beach front on which for us to walk, to talk or to enjoy the ocean. We were truly concerned what would become of those blocks of homes suffering from the erosion they were facing. In Sebastian, further north, the beaches were better off but still not as magical as our favorites in South Carolina. The public beaches were rougher than the soft sands we were used to walking on.
Not just any beach. She was "raised" on vacations to Myrtle Beach in South Carolina. As adults, we have added Hilton Head Island to that list. During the Winter Months, being able to roll down the road in our motorhome, we have added beaches in Florida on the Atlantic and on the Gulf side. The Atlantic is much more powerful than the West Coast of Florida, unless a Hurricane is brewing out in the Gulf.
Now some people don't like sand in their shoes or between their toes. They need to realize that just taking that walk, listening to the waves, watching the dolphins play out in the water, all lowers stress and helps you relax. My wife is a clean freak...well, more than that, she is a super clean freak. Yet, when we are at the beach, we are able to keep the sand out of our motorhome and even our car for the most part. It can be done and done without a lot of stress which could ruin the visit to the beach.
One of our favorite things to do is ride our bike on the beach in Hilton Head Island. You can read about our adventures at https://edandteresasjourney.wordpress.com/. You can ride for miles on those beaches. The wind, the tide, the waves, and there you are traveling on a cruiser aluminum bicycle. Coming off the beach, you are back on the paved paths covering 60-miles of the Island. We have ridden our bicycles to the shores before sun rise, having a breakfast picnic on the beach. We have ridden on the beach as the sun set as well but since it sets in the West and the beach faces East, we like the morning picnic best. And with a number of restaurants near Coligny Beach in Hilton Head, we have picked up breakfast pitas, breakfast pizza and more. That is a great time together.
In Fort Myers, the Gulf can be like an oversized, tranquil lake. The problem here is access to the Fort Myers Beach area. A two lane bridge slows the traffic onto the Fort Myers Beach area. Parking is a pain and once on the beach, it is nice but again, being on the Gulf, one does not see the show of strength in the waves you witness on the Atlantic side. Still, this beach is softer, it is milder, unless there is a major storm or Hurricane in the Gulf. Then you can have some disastrous situations when people do not heed the power of the Gulf. Then the beaches on the Gulf side can be ferocious, even deadly.
Cedar Key, FL is fascinating because of its water access to the Gulf and its town history. Going to the Marina area, the dock, they have created a beach for the public but it is more like a lake access than any beach we have seen on the Gulf or East Coast of Florida. There is little beachfront on which we can walk hand in hand. But there is still the Gulf slapping waves against the shores of Cedar Key.
We love our home in northeast Tennessee with its view of the Appalachian Mountain range. It is breath taking and refreshing to see after we have traveled around the US. But when we travel, a lot of it has a beach somewhere close by. Whether it is Atlantic or the Gulf, and one day it will be the Pacific too, we travel to enjoy this land's bounteous fruits and what is more majestic than being on a beach?
A beach with the water, the waves, the breeze...what an incredible world we live in and thanks to RVing, traveling in our motorhome, we have been blessed to see so much of it since we hit the road in January 2013. Loving the lifestyle is a phrase we often hear but we can honestly say, when we have the opportunity to visit the beach, we look at each other and realize what a blessing RVing is in our lives. It can be yours too. Take some time and visit a beach near you. Take your shoes off, hold your loved one's hand and take a nice walk, good for your health. Then use this time to slow down time and talk with your loved one, good for your heart and soul. After all, it is the beach, which is truly just amazing.