A morning outing with my crew involves a lot of strategic planning and outwitting of foreign intelligence.
I group our activities within walking distance of each other to achieve minimal car seat wrangling, and plan the longest car ride at the end so they fall asleep on the way home. An ideal itinerary hits several notes: one errand for me, one play activity for them, a mutual necessity like eating, and, finally, a win-win-win scenario: two sleeping children and one relieved mama. Altogether, these things need to be completed by noon.
The pentagon would be glad to have me.
As I have rekindled my dedication to getting those tiny darlings with big personalities and matching opinions out of the house, because life is just better that way, I took the kiddos to the pier. It was in the same general area as my chiropractor which fit nicely into both the “errand” and “mutual necessity” categories. Two for one! Hey, I told you I get excited about organization.
And the pier has a cafe on it which would combine the “play” and “mutual necessity” categories. Another two-for-one! This was a legendary plan.
It was a windy day, which would make for some dramatic and exciting waves. What better place to watch the action than a pier?
This is my baby bracing against the wind. Did I mention this was a VERY WINDY day? It was so windy that my active children volunteered to hang out inside their stroller, under full cover. (See, Tia Lynda, why we cannot move to the east coast with you? A little wind and we are driven inside for hot and comforting fried things).
Also, these shots are mostly blurry because the wind was blowing SO HARD I could not hold my arms still. And a lot of them show the pier railing because I was trying to steady my arms by leaning on it. It appears in the frame because I didn’t want to hold my phone over the rail, for fear of it becoming sunken treasure. (No, I still do not have a real camera. Thank you for asking).
So, for many reasons, these are not technically good pictures. But since when is a photo of winter waves churning under a sunny sky ever bad? Someone I follow on Twitter said “hail in the morning, bare feet in the afternoon” and that’s exactly what southern California was all about yesterday. Another reason I can’t move to the east coast: Our winter lasts one morning.
Here are some photos of the choppy seas. And one terribly serene seagull.
After enjoying the breeze as long as we could, my companions and I held hands and braced headlong into it to try to make some forward progress. We managed to hurl ourselves into the OB Pier Cafe. We shared a Fisherman’s Plate of fried cod, shrimp, cole slaw, French fries, one jalapeno popper (like a little bonus for the caregiver), and some truly yummy clam chowder. The fish was hot and crispy and the cole slaw was cold and crunchy. I would go back for the chowder alone, it was so good. Or, maybe I was just cold.
My son insisted we sit at the window. This involved some rearranging of stools and chairs and the server was not enthusiastic. But there wasn’t a soul in the place and we won her over. And I’m glad we did because the view was thrilling.
The OB Pier Cafe is situated on an outpost of the Ocean Beach pier. It’s not so much on the pier as it is attached to it. As in, over the ocean. I never noticed before, but with the big waves we were having, I immediately became aware of each one as it passed under us.
It took me a while to adjust to being not entirely still. I found the horizon and locked eyes on it. Soon, my eyes were drawn down toward a huge wave, crashing up against the pier. Then we watched it roll toward us, and right underneath. We all bobbed ever so slightly as it passed. It was like being on a ride, albeit a very gentle one, almost undetectable unless you are prone to motion sickness (hello).
Even with all the death defying wave riding, and perhaps because of it, lunch was really, really fun.
This was our window. See the part of the pier you walk on? That’s where the waves were crashing up to. No, I didn’t get a picture of it. I tend to think of these things later.
I did get a picture of this guy as one of the big waves was crashing.
And of our French fries. I have priorities, you know.
By afternoon, the light had changed. Here is a pretty dramatic shot of the sea. I kept thinking how cold it was and about the Titanic survivors and how they managed to do that in icy water. Brrr.
The OB pier has these enchanting glass marbles set randomly into the concrete. The boys love finding them.