Thursday, October 23, 2008

Gulf Coast Memories

I ran across this scrapbook page recently. These photos of my children were taken on Okaloosa Island between Fort Walton Beach and Destin, Florida. This nice memory really makes a recent life-changing event seem even more surreal. More to follow on that . . . but for now, the thoughts I journaled for this amazing day:

"I remember this Gulf Coast Beach, located along the shoreline on Hwy 98 between Destin and Fort Walton Beach, Florida. I remember skipping through here on Christmas Day when I was young singing, “I'm having a White Christmas, but not the kind with freezing snow!” I remember trying to skim board along the emerald shore over and over, until my buns became so bruised I decided I didn't need to learn that skill. I remember sunning here for hours, back when I wore a bikini with pride, and had not a single worry about skin cancer and wrinkles. I remember walking hand in hand with my very first boyfriend here—my stomach all fluttery. Then many years later, and what feels like yesterday, my stomach fluttered again as I walked here with a photographer and an even more special guy for a photo shoot that would help announce our intentions to the world. I remember the dunes then were so tall and vast you could get lost in them . . .

But that was then . . .

Now, after three “30-year” hurricanes have stormed them head-on within 10 years, the dunes look like moguls on a flattened ski slope. But they are still a beautiful backdrop for a photo shoot. The sand is still snow white, the surf is still emerald green, and my children love this beach just as much as I did—even though its landscape has changed. The Gulf Coast will always be my home. Hopefully, my children keep their own fond memories of this beach— the one I shall never forget." ~ Photos—August, 2005; Journaling—September 2005

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