As kids growing up we went to the beaches. Just like so many kids our age, we also experienced the phenomenon of a summertime broken heart.
It happens at Summer-Camps as it does when working a summer job. Here, on Aruba, so much of it happened on the beaches as we became an integral part of timeshare and all of its consequences.
The beach was't ours anymore. New people populated it. Better yet, families came in droves as the doors to the Aruba Beach Club swung open. And as is well known, families often have daughters. Pretty ones with braces or red hair. Lovely ones that were quiet and sat alone on the sand. Fun ones that got wound up in the morning and chatted, ran, swam, danced and laughed beyond what was normal. They were here from everywhere and had come to a paradise lost.
Us guys, at that testosterone age did all we could to suck up our stomachs and keep a comb in our bathing suits. Something that I think probably gave the wrong impression more than once. There we were, looking at these gifts that our individual gods had sent us. AMERICAN TEENAGE GIRLS TO FLIRT WITH!!!!
Gotta tell ya, it just does not get better than that, until:
Some of us, me being one of them got to know the parents and the younger brothers and carried on letter writing during the year with our new female friends. And then there was the other group that not only stayed in touch but missed their summer timeshare acquaintance. One friend, nameless for sure, pined the entire time he wasn't with his summertime gal. While the family was here for their three weeks, everything they did was together and everywhere they went was hand in hand. Three years of that and it can be serious. At least it was in his book. One at a time the gals changed or exchanged and most of us got used to the rotating flirtations. Not him. When they exchanged, he was invited. HMMMM. For college, he gave up his Dutch scholarship and opted for U. of Miami. You guessed it, she was there. The hand holding continued ... I envied that. Life moves on and so do kids. We are cursed with becoming adults ERGO responsible. On one of my Aruba vacations, I went to the ABC and saw a couple walking down the beach, holding hands. I walked over to them and it was my friend and his gal. This time they were on their honeymoon. When I approached, she took off her sunglasses and hugged me to greet me. It is then that I realized she was blind. It was at that moment that I realized what she saw in him. She saw him. This stunning blonde that could have had any guy on the beach, fell in love with the only one that allowed himself to be seen by the one that he loved. I liked that concept. I liked it a lot. I visited them once. They live in Washington where he is a banker. She is a teacher for gifted children. When the taxi took me to their home, I stood outside a moment. Their home was painted a dull avocado green. Their yard is nice. There was a tricycle lying on its side on the front walkway. I stood on the sidewalk and thought: Love lives here in this place. Year by year love learned to discover itself. We playboys ended up with our share of broken hearts but this special couple made it through all of the laughter and the late night dances. They met on a beach where she sat and waited for their destiny. Thanks to a time well shared, a pretty time, soft and thoughtful. Thanks to that time I could stand on this sidewalk and feel envy leave me as happiness replaced that emotion. I knocked on the door and was invited in. A few coffees and snacks later, it was time to go. As I waited for the Taxi, her last words were, "See you on Aruba!" Ohh to be seen. We certainly had our share of broken hearts, but time heals all.