I was right... Since last time, the weather dipped down far enough to signal the first frost advisory of the season. Then, the warm wave came in. For the last week, I've watched the forecast for this weekend (Oct. 11th) climb from 72 degrees all the way to 81 degrees and sunny. In other words, this weekend would be the perfect way to end the season!
Even if the weather decides to bounce back again in another two weeks, we'll be busy at the Halloween party. Since we won't be at the beach any more this year, this will be the last Mazo Manor. I may or may not continue the series next season. (I'm not very good at writing drama anyway, as per my original intent.) I will at least tell the bigger stories, such as my attempt to bring back the Nude Olympics. I will have a dedicated post about this initiative sometime over the winter.
We made it to the beach slightly after noon. The parking lot was about 3/4 full, and the first thing we noticed was that the porta-potty was missing. Perhaps it was a mistake for us to skip the bathroom in Subway, because that was the only stop we made in our 1.5 hours of travel. What are the chances that there is one by the beach? We started the hike to find out.
Along the way, we noticed something very strange. It wasn't a bad thing though because we really enjoyed it... There were no mosquitoes! Seriously, there were none to be found, and I have no idea why. It felt as-if they might be planning an ambush, but we made it through safely. We encountered a couple on the way back, but nowhere near the normal amount. The insects of the day were a few more bees than usual and an attack of harmonia axyridis.
Upon arrival, we saw that all groups were represented. It seems that everyone wanted to make the most of this surprisingly beautiful day. Almanac measured the water temp at 64 degrees, which was a bit cold for us! We set up near the Elders as usual, but didn't do a whole lot of talking. Sometimes it's hard to get a word in edgewise with that group...
At some point, it always happens. My vivacious lady friend turns to me with a smile on her face and says "Thank you -- you always seem to know what I want better than I do." Three hours of driving, bugs that bite along over two miles of hiking, sand in places where it don't belong, and cooling off in often questionable water -- is going to the beach really worth it? Hell yeah! A day at the beach is like having a nice long massage for both of us. It relaxes the stress away, without all the touching.
We went for a walk to the island, mostly hoping that we could find a place to pee. (Remember, no porta-potties!) Wading through the water didn't help, because it was a bit icky with algae for us to want to sit in, and only made us want to go more. On the island, a guy approached us and had 1.5 of our names correct. (Mine correct, hers close.) While talking to us, he kept mentioning things that we didn't remember. Neither of us remember meeting him before, but we've met a lot of people too. It's likely that he was confusing us with another couple, like many others have when seeing us. Either way, it was a strange interaction. I need to start being like these people, so I can recall who people are much better.
Early on, I spotted another couple around our age on the beach and figured that we could try meeting them. They looked familiar, but I couldn't figure out where from... I figured that they must've been on the beach before. I know that I've never talked to them. My girlfriend recognized the guy, but also couldn't remember where from. They were in front of the Elders, and as we made our way to them I remembered exactly where I had seen them before. Since we were there already, I said "You were at the car show!" This brought forth a flood of memories from the car show, including why I didn't want to talk to them the first time.
At the car show, they were camping a few tents down from us. They were a bit too touchy-feely, with his hand almost always on her butt. A cute couple for sure, but they own a swinger place. My girlfriend got a flier from him at the car show, and they made it a point to give us another one this time.
At the same time, they answered to another mystery. I've always been curious about the other very social group that sometimes forms on the slightly-left side of the beach. The couple were part of that group. I may be jumping to conclusions, but it makes sense because there are almost always different people chatting away there.
By this time we both really had to pee, so we decided to head out a bit early. (I heard several people who had the same problem.) Some of the Elders decided to head out as well, but I hadn't yet talked to them despite being so close and saying "Hi". Getting quickly to the point, I approached Kingpin and said "You haven't called me a double-agent yet today, are you feeling OK?" He mentioned that he hopes I'm not spying for the wrong side, and I corrected him in saying that I'm not spying for either side. Hopefully that was enough to get my point across, because we were both heading out and didn't talk much beyond that.
After the beach, we supported the local economy (and local wastewater treatment facility) by visiting the drive-in restaurant. They have good food and good treats, so it's recommended. Despite all the awkward moments, it was still a great day at the beach, and a great end to the season!