Emma's team had a game this past Sunday in Grand Haven, which is a three hour drive from our house. Which, any way your look at it, is an all day trip, basically. Her teammate Kayla rode with us. It was the most gorgeous October day ever; just below 70 degrees, sunny and crisp. Outstanding. We got to the fields with 50 minutes to spare, so we drove off in search of the beach, knowing that it was nearby by not wanting to venture too far away.
Less than a mile from the fields we found a sign announcing Rosy Mound Nature Center and decided to give it a try. No water was visible, but there was a sign saying 'No Lifeguard on Duty'. Bingo!
Nowhere on any of the trail markers did it indicate that the trek to the beach was around 3/4 mile, Nor did it mention that it was up and down flights of stairs over dunes! The girls ran ahead while I did my best to keep up with them. I failed miserably. I was huffing and puffing and moving by sheer will to see the Lake.
The water wasn't nearly as cold as I thought it would be in October. The sand was gloriously warm, and the waves were quietly lapping the beach. There were tons of boats on the Lake and many people enjoying the beach. I wanted to stay all day. In hindsight, we would have left 2 hours earlier so we could just hang out there.
Emma had no problem running right into the water, even though her shorts were getting all wet. I was sort of surprised that she didn't jump all the way in!
The harsh reality was that we could only stay 10 minutes because the trek back was so long. They ran ahead of me and I just kept climbing. I would have given anything to just be able to sit for a bit and rest, but the clock was ticking and they had to be on the field in 15 minutes. I didn't account for how hard the trip back would be, but I didn't stop. Not once.
They played at the most beautiful high school complex I have ever seen. The field was huge. They have their own soccer stadium with bleachers. Seriously.
We were massacred. Of course I felt we should stay at the beach but did the responsible thing by bringing them to the game. After, they both wanted to go back but there was no way I'd have been able to do that climb again. And we still had a 3 hour drive home to deal with.
It was totally worth the drive.