The weather was supposed to be exceptionally nice on the weekend so my daughter and I planned an outing. We would drive to one of our local beaches near one of our favorite walks so we could combine our two favorite passions: sunbathing and walking/bird watching.
My daughter has a demanding work schedule so she was really looking forward to relaxing, and maybe even napping in her beach chair. We piled our two sand chairs into her car trunk, made sure we had the requisite sun lotion, sun glasses, binoculars for bird watching and (for me) reading matter. Off we went.
Although there were more people than usual at the beach on a winter’s day due to the warm temperatures, it did not seem crowded. We scanned the clusters of bodies on the beach and selected a spot we thought would be quiet and distraction free.
No sooner had we settled into our chairs, than a family group arrived with two small dogs. And where did they choose to congregate? You guessed it! Right in front of us at the water’s edge. We thought they’d move on, but they seemed perfectly happy where they were. They weren’t terribly noisy but we were looking for a quieter space.
After ten minutes, we decided to move to another spot farther away from the center of the beach where we were sure we’d have peace and quiet. Having just settled ourselves back into our chairs, we suddenly heard two voices directly behind us. Two little girls, whose parents were some distance away on the beach, decided to camp out right behind us to play on a boat rack which they used to jump on and off. In between their jumps and sisterly arguing, they would yell across the beach, “Look Mommy…..” This went on for about fifteen minutes making it impossible for us to close our eyes and just relax.
So…you guessed right…of course we moved again. This time we moved back almost to where we had started since the original family cluster that disturbed us had moved on down the beach. Meanwhile the sun was beginning to set and the air was suddenly becoming much cooler. We put on our jackets, turned up our collars, and nestled into our chairs hoping to grab the final fifteen minutes of the sun and maybe even some peace and quiet.
Moments later we heard a loud buzzing sound that startled us. It sounded like a lawn trimmer, but we were on the beach so that wasn’t likely. We scanned the beach and then looked upward. A drone was hovering above us! In disbelief, we looked at each other and started to laugh.
Clearly there was no escaping the intrusions of suburbia on this lovely day. There were too many of us with different agendas trying to share the same small beach.
We watched the sun reach the horizon, packed up our beach chairs, put them in our car trunk, and set out on our sunset walk. Meanwhile, all our other distractors were also leaving the beach. Five minutes into our walk we heard a buzzing overhead. The drone had followed us on our walk!