My brother Woodchuck invited Mom to come see him in Beaver, Utah, but I couldn’t let her go just yet until she saw at least one sunset at a Southern California beach! So, even though I knew it was the height of the summer crowds, I got Mom aboard the Metro Expo Line and headed west to Santa Monica!
Sure enough, once we arrived at the Santa Monica Municipal Pier, we had to push through tons of people, but once we got to the upper deck, Mom was astonished by the view! To the east, Santa Monica and Pacific Park, and far to the west, 13 hours across the Pacific: Incheon! Equally astonishing is that this is where cartoonist, Elzie Crisler Segar, met a Norwegian boatman named Oli Olsen and got inspiration for his most famous character, Popeye the Sailor!
The Pier opened on September 9, 1909 and was a center of amusement from the start with a famous carousel designed by Charles Looff. Today, there are roller coasters, a Ferris wheel, and all kinds of carnival fare, but at this time of day, the crowds were just too intense!
So we ducked down below the pier to watch the waves pulling against the shore and feel the sand on our toes. The cool ocean water and the gentle sea breeze reminded me exactly why this is such a popular place during the summer. Inland, it can get over 110 degrees in the summer time, but here at the coast, it is always just right.
Though there wasn’t much room on the beach, we were able to scrape out a patch of sand to kick back and enjoy the sunset. Mom and I are both very active beavers, but once in a while, it’s important to just sit and take it all in. Mom doesn’t get to see many sunsets in Neungheodae because of all the buildings, and really, I spend so much time on my computer that I don’t see them very often either.
So tonight, I will send Mom off on a bus to Beaver hope she drops by again before she returns to Korea. Maybe we’ll all get a chance to go somewhere together as a family. It’s been a very, very long time.