Do you guys know BeachMama? Some of you do. She’s been a commenter here since forever. I think since day one maybe. She and Pinky, AKA One Small Sock. I’m terrible at responding to comments (as you know) and waves of readers come and go because of it. It makes me sad that some people don’t stay but I have learned that I can only do what I do, which is blog, not answer emails and comments in a timely manner.
Please do not follow my lead though. It’s terrible manners not to respond to comments. If you want to grow your blog and create a healthy community of good friends, my way is NOT the way to do it. Some people might think you can create an air of mystery by being unavailable to your readers. That’s a bunch of baloney. I know plenty of big-name bloggers who take great pains to respond to their readers and they are big because of their hard work and attention to their fans.
Of course when your audience gets too big it’s not possible to respond to every email, but everyone should at least try. And if you still can’t pull that off, then be like me: hang your head in shame, and then write a post about what a crappy blogger you are. Or just be happy being a small-time blogger. The big time is not all it’s cracked up to be (not that I know anything about that but I have been blogging since way before it was considered a normal thing to do). Anyway! Who asked for a lesson on blogging? Not you, I’m sure.
What I wanted to say was that some commenters’ names stick in my head after years and years of sweet faithful comments, and one of those commenters is BeachMama. I wish everyone had as loyal a reader as BeachMama. She stopped commenting a year ago for maybe four days. You know why? Because she HAD A BABY!!! In her house, without drugs!
She has two kids now and I can still count on getting a slew of comments from her when she has a moment to sit down. I can always tell when she’s had a free moment because three or four comments will ping into my email. It’s the sweetest thing. Please don’t think I expect this from anybody. I do not. I don’t deserve it!! But I just want you to know that your un-responded-to comments do mean something to me. Especially year after year after year.
And you know what is even cooler? Meeting your long-time commenters in real life. And let me tell you, BeachMama is just as sweet in real life. I’m really quite bowled over by her sweetness.
We took her to the beach. She is BeachMama after all. It’d be a crime to go somewhere nice and air-conditioned. We went straight to the beach and sweated it out under the great big California sun. It was actually really nice. The sand has mounded up in these berms lately on our beach and when the waves crash over the berms during high tide, they create small one-to-two foot lagoon-puddles that are perfect for little kids to play in.
It’s a mother’s dream. You get all the pleasantness of the ocean breeze and sounds of crashing surf but your kids can safely paddle around in little pools that aren’t going to suddenly going to rip them out to sea or smash them into smithereens under a giant frothy wave. It was quite relaxing for me.
It wasn’t quite as relaxing for BeachMama as she has a little girl who likes to run off into the horizon any chance she gets. While I sat and helped Bug make drippy sand castles, BeachMama ran hither and yon fetching little Apple (that’s her nickname).
Just in case that wasn’t tiring enough I decided to take them to Balboa Island so we could ride the ferry over to Newport Peninsula. That’s my favorite tour for out-of-towners. It gives a good feel for the good parts of living here.
So we trekked and we trekked around and around Balboa Island.
And then we trekked some more.
We walked all the way to the end of the Balboa Pier and watched some fish. We saw tons and tons of fish. I’m thinking now is the time to go fishing, so it’s too bad Uncle George lives far away now and has a full-time job (though really we are so so so thankful he has full-time work and a safe place to live). There were little itty-bitty fish everywhere. It was really cool. We also saw some seals and that was neat. It was like living in our own version of Sea World for free. I was wishing I had a smelly herring in my pocket that I could toss to one of them and see if they’d bark or do tricks.
I’d say we showed them a pretty good day in the life of a Californian. I just hope we didn’t wear them out! I know I wore myself out pretty good, but then I’m an old tired housewife these days so it probably doesn’t take much to wear me out. I need to get in better shape because Beach Mama promised to take me ice-skating along the Rideau Canal if I ever make it up to visit her. I think I’d love that.