Lunch on Wednesday yesterday was Nikay's family, along with Pascha's of course, as they're hanging here until their rental comes open.
On the beach yesterday someone referred to my G-girl as a "hardy Northwestern girl, to be sure." It was a. meant as a compliment and b. truer than dirt. She and two of Nikay's children were SWIMMING in Carr Inlet in early April. That's insanity, sheer insanity. What had been intended as a short jaunt to the beach suddenly turned into a full blown homeschool scouts adventure.
No one could blame them, really; the tide was ridiculously low, and the sea creatures were out in the tidal pools. As the children ventured into them to explore, they got more and more wet. After being wet and acclimating to the chill, what was an --accidental, of course--headlong dive into the water? Before long the three tallest were well offshore, swimming in head-to-toe warm gear, from boots to coats. After some necessary photography, the Moms started the equally necessary task of starting a gigantic bonfire, both to warm our hypothermic children and to dry their clothes at least a bit, before we tried to hike back up from the beach.
I hadn't planned a fire, but I brought a lighter. Such a Scout! Be grateful, small frigid ones, that your Moms are handy with drywood!
While we were down on the beach, Nikay's son and Pascha's son went at it in the big style fighting that only rough-and-tumble boys can do. It was actually kind of disturbing to me, because my boys, while they do love to wrestle, are nowhere near as strong and tough as these guys were. I have often wondered to what measure Boyness was holding back when pounding on the N-meister, and in Raeden he found a well-matched opponent in strength, size and inclination. They LOVED it. For me, it was like watching clash of the titans. They would really hit each other using all their favorite methods, from kneeing and wrestling to full blown fisticuffs. They'd slug each other, hurl each other to the ground and pant, all the while grinning like Cheshire cats. They were clearly enjoying this huge test, pushing the envelope of what they'd ever been able to do with another kid, constantly exhilarated that the other guy wasn't getting angry or falling down crying.
What fascinated us all was that the boys would respect each other's limits within the context of their battle. They were wailing on each other while pretending they were Superheroes in a movie. When one had enough he'd say "Pause the movie" and the other would stop; they'd both sit, regain their gumption and then renew their attack. This went on for a long while, until someone got a bloody lip and didn't notice. The other fellow did, stopped, and waited for the wailing which didn't come.
"Why did you stop?" Lip asked.
"Uh, you're bleeding," came the response. Cue the wailing.
Our quick jaunt to the beach culminated in 7 hours of beaching-it, with wading, swimming, wrestling and cliff-diving. It was worthy of last year's homeschool scout / lunch on Wednesday tribe and it felt good. The kids had a blast and the Moms could sense the inevitable approach of a regular capacity to have an uninterrupted conversation.