Having grown up in southern California, surely the beach played a big role in your childhood. ~ My parents were dear friends with Gary Cooper’s family who lived in Malibu on Broad Beach. We spent a lot of time there so I have early memories of that – good ones. I liked the beach until I got sand in crevices I didn’t know I had.
…I was raised around pools. Just think of the theme from The Beverly Hillbillies – “swimming pools… movie stars.” Pools are great because they’re equally temperatured, there’s a bathroom nearby, a fridge. The worst problem is your eyes sting a little if the pool man didn’t do the chlorine right.
So, when you do go to the beach, what’s your standard gear? ~ I bring chairs and beach towels, that’s it. I’m not a big accessory queen. I paint; I like to bring acrylics and paint the rocks and driftwood. I find that very pleasing.
Do you tan? ~ Oh yeah! But I don’t slather myself with baby oil like I used to. Actually, my other big memory of the beach is Bain de Soleil Orange Gelee. They still make it! It’s like Crisco.
Is eating and shopping on your itinerary or do you just dig your toes in the sand? ~ I’m not a foodie. Honestly? If you go to the beach, you shouldn’t leave the beach. To me, once you’re there, you’re there. If I lived at the beach, I would never leave. Ever. Especially if you had a pool at the beach. Oh yeah, forget about it.
Are your kids sand-friendly? ~ My daughter didn’t grow up around the beach, but my son is very natural in the water and there’s something very beautiful about watching this boy inelegantly being part of the ocean. He boogie boards and he’s just being thrown around and he loooves it. Therefore, I have become enamored with the ocean. It’s now a place where I seek solace.
Of your five senses, which does the beach most tickle? ~ I would say that it’s a sensory integration for me. What I’ve come to understand is that there’s something about the way it feels, sounds, smells, looks and tastes that actually reboots my computer. And for children with sensory integration disorder, the ocean is an incredible tool. There’s something very pure and natural about it. So when I let go of all of my control-freakdom, I really do become one with it. And you can’t control sand! No, but you can control a freakin’ pool!
Do you actually get in the water? ~ Oh yeah! I have a wet suit. You wear a wet suit to go in the ocean? Uh, in southern California in May? Have you noticed that surfers actually wear them, too? Well, guess what…if that wimp Laird Hamilton is going to wear a wetsuit, I’m wearing a wet suit!
If you were a fish, what kind would you be? ~ I would be an angelfish called…….Wanda.