Fridays in the OC

For many years we've had a summer tradition of packing up a cooler on Friday afternoons and heading to the beach.  We rarely arrive before 5 p.m. and we always meet my friend Nike and her husband.  We've been doing this for years.  We don't go every Friday but we go as many Fridays as we can.

Nike and I take turns bringing Vodka Tonics.  I don't know why, but we always bring them and never any other type of drink.  We both pack lots of fresh fruit, crackers and cheeses and we often bring sandwiches for later in the evening.  It is, perhaps, my favorite summer tradition.  The evenings are (to me) the best part of the day at the beach.  Once we arrive, the world stops and there is no problem Nike and I can't resolve between the two of us.

At least for as long as our toes remain in the sand.

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The waves were big and there was a strong riptide last Friday.  The lifeguards were asking everyone to stay out of the water.  

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The water looks inviting, but when there's a strong riptide it's dangerous.  The current will suck you right out (and under) in no time.  For those of you who aren't around beaches much, that's what a riptide is.  A strong current with an undertow.

All of a sudden Nike said, "Quick 24, turn around and take a picture."

I did.

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This Orange County lifeguard is brought to you courtesy of my friend, Nike.

Soon the whole process of sunset began.  The change in lighting never ceases to be magical for me.  It begins in such a subtle way.

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Nike and my son, PR, have an ongoing game of beach paddle ball.  They play every time we are at the beach together and they've been doing this since PR was a toddler.  Each time they play they try to make a new "world record" of how many times they can hit the ball back and forth without it dropping.

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They play until it becomes hard to see the ball due to the dimming light of sunset.

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The sunset was absolutely spectacular last Friday.  I came home with over one hundred pictures.  I couldn't stop taking them in my feeble effort to capture the beauty.

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The colors were so vivid!

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The sun turned into a fireball as it dropped below the horizon.

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Evenings like this take my breath away.

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In a matter of moments, the sun was gone.  We stayed for awhile longer because we like to enjoy every last drop of color the sky has to offer.

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If I ever become a proficient nighttime photographer I'll share with you how beautiful the stars and moon are as they reflect off the ocean.  It's absolutely breathtaking.

© Twenty Four At Heart

78 Responses to “Fridays in the OC”

  1. Deidre

    Beautiful indeed. Last week I flew from the East coast the LA and I watched the sun set for hours. It was breathtaking.
    Your Friday night tradition sounds fantastic!

  2. Deidre

    Beautiful indeed. Last week I flew from the East coast the LA and I watched the sun set for hours. It was breathtaking.
    Your Friday night tradition sounds fantastic!

  3. Deidre

    Beautiful indeed. Last week I flew from the East coast the LA and I watched the sun set for hours. It was breathtaking.
    Your Friday night tradition sounds fantastic!

  4. tonya cinnamon

    gorgeous photographs… i remember going to clear water Florida for the first time a few years back. I had never saw a sunset on the beach until I went there. It was lovely 🙂

  5. tonya cinnamon

    gorgeous photographs… i remember going to clear water Florida for the first time a few years back. I had never saw a sunset on the beach until I went there. It was lovely 🙂

  6. tonya cinnamon

    gorgeous photographs… i remember going to clear water Florida for the first time a few years back. I had never saw a sunset on the beach until I went there. It was lovely 🙂

  7. vodkamom

    I’m drooling. And it’s not for the sunsets.

  8. vodkamom

    I’m drooling. And it’s not for the sunsets.

  9. vodkamom

    I’m drooling. And it’s not for the sunsets.

  10. Erin

    so liked the beach…sigh. this is what i miss about leaving my california.
    have a wonderful day.

  11. Erin

    so liked the beach…sigh. this is what i miss about leaving my california.
    have a wonderful day.

  12. Erin

    so liked the beach…sigh. this is what i miss about leaving my california.
    have a wonderful day.

  13. Linda

    Awesome, awesome, awesome! Wow! Thank you so much for sharing these with us.

  14. Linda

    Awesome, awesome, awesome! Wow! Thank you so much for sharing these with us.

  15. Linda

    Awesome, awesome, awesome! Wow! Thank you so much for sharing these with us.

  16. Jan

    *le sigh*
    Absolutely gorgeous. The sunset, too, of course. 😛
    I took pictures of my houseplants and food all weekend. Yup, that’s me – living on the edge.

  17. Jan

    *le sigh*
    Absolutely gorgeous. The sunset, too, of course. 😛
    I took pictures of my houseplants and food all weekend. Yup, that’s me – living on the edge.

  18. Jan

    *le sigh*
    Absolutely gorgeous. The sunset, too, of course. 😛
    I took pictures of my houseplants and food all weekend. Yup, that’s me – living on the edge.

  19. Andrea

    How pretty! I would love to live somewhere so picturesque. And thank Nike for us for the pic of the hottie.

  20. Andrea

    How pretty! I would love to live somewhere so picturesque. And thank Nike for us for the pic of the hottie.

  21. Andrea

    How pretty! I would love to live somewhere so picturesque. And thank Nike for us for the pic of the hottie.

  22. Stella

    GEEZ! Those beach pics were amazing! And the lifeguard looked like Brody Jenner! LOL. Hot!

  23. Stella

    GEEZ! Those beach pics were amazing! And the lifeguard looked like Brody Jenner! LOL. Hot!

  24. Stella

    GEEZ! Those beach pics were amazing! And the lifeguard looked like Brody Jenner! LOL. Hot!

  25. Tricia (irishsamom)

    Beautiful photography. You made my heart ache for SA – the beach reminds me of home. And the lifeguard was just the icing on the cake – lol.
    Tricia 🙂

  26. Tricia (irishsamom)

    Beautiful photography. You made my heart ache for SA – the beach reminds me of home. And the lifeguard was just the icing on the cake – lol.
    Tricia 🙂

  27. Tricia (irishsamom)

    Beautiful photography. You made my heart ache for SA – the beach reminds me of home. And the lifeguard was just the icing on the cake – lol.
    Tricia 🙂

  28. ballerinatoes

    Just stunning…if I ever make it out to the OC in the summer I totally want to join you and Nike. And I’m down with Vodka Tonics. 😉

  29. ballerinatoes

    Just stunning…if I ever make it out to the OC in the summer I totally want to join you and Nike. And I’m down with Vodka Tonics. 😉

  30. ballerinatoes

    Just stunning…if I ever make it out to the OC in the summer I totally want to join you and Nike. And I’m down with Vodka Tonics. 😉

  31. LPC

    Beautiful. I’d probably bring a gin martini in a silver shaker. Is that OK?

  32. LPC

    Beautiful. I’d probably bring a gin martini in a silver shaker. Is that OK?

  33. LPC

    Beautiful. I’d probably bring a gin martini in a silver shaker. Is that OK?

  34. emmysuh

    Gawd, I could live on the beach, seriously. I don’t care about anything but music and laughter and sun and splashing in the water.
    You’d probably have to send in Mr. Lifeguard after me though — I can’t be near a beach and not be in the water.

  35. emmysuh

    Gawd, I could live on the beach, seriously. I don’t care about anything but music and laughter and sun and splashing in the water.
    You’d probably have to send in Mr. Lifeguard after me though — I can’t be near a beach and not be in the water.

  36. emmysuh

    Gawd, I could live on the beach, seriously. I don’t care about anything but music and laughter and sun and splashing in the water.
    You’d probably have to send in Mr. Lifeguard after me though — I can’t be near a beach and not be in the water.

  37. Celeste Maia

    Gorgeous photographs, and what a great summer tradition! Sounds perfect to me, what better way to end the week? You are quite a photographer.

  38. Celeste Maia

    Gorgeous photographs, and what a great summer tradition! Sounds perfect to me, what better way to end the week? You are quite a photographer.

  39. Celeste Maia

    Gorgeous photographs, and what a great summer tradition! Sounds perfect to me, what better way to end the week? You are quite a photographer.

  40. Midlife Slices

    I too have several hundred photos of sunsets. If you figure out something great to do with them, please let me know but one thing I have to ask…..why only ONE of the hunka burnin lifeguard?? 🙂

  41. Midlife Slices

    I too have several hundred photos of sunsets. If you figure out something great to do with them, please let me know but one thing I have to ask…..why only ONE of the hunka burnin lifeguard?? 🙂

  42. Midlife Slices

    I too have several hundred photos of sunsets. If you figure out something great to do with them, please let me know but one thing I have to ask…..why only ONE of the hunka burnin lifeguard?? 🙂

  43. darsden

    absolutely beautiful pictures and I just love the life guard how cool was that. Really gorgeous pictures!

  44. darsden

    absolutely beautiful pictures and I just love the life guard how cool was that. Really gorgeous pictures!

  45. darsden

    absolutely beautiful pictures and I just love the life guard how cool was that. Really gorgeous pictures!

  46. Pseudo

    I loved this post, love the sunset, and absolutely love your summer tradition.
    We just got home from an afternoon on the North Shore. Our coocktails may change, but we’ve been going to the same beach since 1986….

  47. Pseudo

    I loved this post, love the sunset, and absolutely love your summer tradition.
    We just got home from an afternoon on the North Shore. Our coocktails may change, but we’ve been going to the same beach since 1986….

  48. Pseudo

    I loved this post, love the sunset, and absolutely love your summer tradition.
    We just got home from an afternoon on the North Shore. Our coocktails may change, but we’ve been going to the same beach since 1986….

  49. Beth Christians

    Thank you so much for sharing 24…How AWESOME (the sunsets) and BREATHTAKING (the lifeguard)!
    Makes me long for a visit to SoCal…

  50. Beth Christians

    Thank you so much for sharing 24…How AWESOME (the sunsets) and BREATHTAKING (the lifeguard)!
    Makes me long for a visit to SoCal…

  51. Beth Christians

    Thank you so much for sharing 24…How AWESOME (the sunsets) and BREATHTAKING (the lifeguard)!
    Makes me long for a visit to SoCal…

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