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Sunday, July 19, 2015

Hunks At The Beach

Band of Bachelors coming this summer
I love beach scenes on the covers of novels. I love the whole white-sand-blue-ocean-thing. Tanned bodies lounging without a care in the world, or so it seems.

We are, after all, in the middle of summer. The year is half over. Before long we'll be making plans for the holidays. We hear the crickets chirping and see the bright rose-orange glow of sunset, hear the waves crashing and hear the sea birds crying. 

I have nothing but happy memories of being at the beach with my grandfather. For two glorious weeks out of the year we got to go to his mobile home in Santa Cruz. We'd see the fireworks on the beach at Capitola on 4th of July. He was a pastor, never making much in the way of money, but his trailer perpetually parked at a year-round park, gave him an inexpensive respite. Our favorite thing to do was eat pancakes, and it was a contest to see who could eat more, me, my brother or my grandfather. I usually won. But sometimes he did!
My beach bum grandson. Yeah, he's a hunk too.

I can remember walking the beach with him, talking about anything but religion. Grandpa was like that. He never forced anything on anyone. One of the good guys, the white hats. Because I was little, he seemed like a giant, even though he was only about six feet, a little shorter than my dad, but for some reason, he seemed taller. His long legs stretched to the sky. He took two hour walks and wore his swim trunks well into his eighties, always insisting on being fit and in the sun to have a tan year-round. He'd fashioned a home made windbreaker, created the stakes and had them sewn together in a canvas ribbon that would keep the wind off us. Grandpa could have sold hundreds of these if he'd wanted to do something else other than preach. My grandmother would sit under the shade of our umbrella with Noxema on her nose. She burned easily.  

After my grandmother died, he retired at near eighty. Now that he is gone, the beach belongs to the hunks again. Belongs to the fantasies in my stories about love and the happily ever after. But as a child, the beach was all about grandfather, and the horizon on the ocean, about dodging waves and daring to dream of what my life was going to be like. Who would I meet? Would I ever fall in love and would that love be as powerful as the ocean?

Band of Bachelors, novella in Hot SEALs
I'm so excited to announce that my novella, Band of Brothers: Lucas, will be part of the launch of Cat Johnson's Kindle World Hot SEALs 8/4/15, along with some dozen other fabulous authors. We began this anthology over a year ago with Hot Alpha SEALs, which hit the NYT and USA lists when it came out. Now many of the same authors are involved in this new world. Hope you enjoy the journey.

What about you? What kinds of memories does the beach have for you? Memories of childhood? Loves? Stolen dreams or wonderful vacations?

Sharon Hamilton
Life is one fool thing after another.
Love is two fool things after each other.

8 comments:

julie beasley said...

Born in July I remember many trailer holidays with family. Collecting shells and pretty stones on the beach. Cockles picking. And my parents telling us stories when they were young

Cara Marsi said...

Sharon, what a lovely tribute to your grandfather. I grew up on the East Coast, less than a 2-hour drive to the ocean. I remember jumping waves with my siblings, the smell of the salt air, the feel of the cool water, the sand so hot sometimes it burned our feet. Afterwards, walking the boardwalk, eating pizza and salt water taffy, going on the rides, being sunburned. Thanks for the trip down memory lane, or should I say, memory boardwalk!

Sharon Hamilton said...

Julie, thanks for that vision. I can see it clearly. I think a lot of us think of family when we think of beaches. Always wonderful to look back, and share.

Sharon Hamilton said...

Cara,
Yes, we used to ride the big roller coaster at the Boardwalk in Santa Cruz too, and my grandmother instilled in me a love of saltwater taffy as well. Ahhh, thank you for the memories!

Melissa Keir said...

There is something about a beach. Once the sand gets in between your toes, you can never escape. It's like it's in your heart. I'm glad you had that time with your grandfather and are instilling it in your grandchildren. All the best with your latest book!

jean hart stewart said...

Since I live about five minutes from the beach I see the ocean often and love it in all its many moods....Wonderful to be close.

Sharon Hamilton said...

Thanks, Melissa.
I'm loving this new series for me. A little more humor than in my other books. Really enjoying the write! Finishing this weekend.

Sharon Hamilton said...

Jean,
I would love that. Almost bought a house at Myrtle Beach nearly 2 years ago. would love that. I still have that picture on my wall...A little less expensive than California...LOL. Maybe florida???

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