A typical long weekend at the Finlayson home looks rather boring and uneventful; however, in honor of our Presidents’ past and present, we decided to pack up the baby and dog and head to Long Beach for a long overdue visit to Auntie Linda Sassen. We left on Saturday February 19th, and drove 2 ½ hours. When we got into town we didn’t waste any time. We drove straight to the grocery store where we purchased two clamming licenses for $7.40 each. This license not only legalized our efforts to catch clams, but it also allowed us to catch up to 15 clams (I thought this would be rather easy at first).
When we first got onto the beach, Gary (Linda’s boyfriend) gave us our clammer. This was a long cylinder with two handles on the end. For the first hour TJ and I walked up and down the beach hitting the end of the long cylinder on the wet sand apparently trying to bring up the air bubbles that the clams use as breathing holes. With exactly zero clams in our nets I wanted to give up; TJ was much more optimistic that we would find success. I decided I needed to revamp my plan of action.
I started to follow Gary around (he is quite the fisherman/clammer) and try to see what he saw. While I was shadowing I noticed three little air bubbles protruding from the ground; I decided to venture over and see if it might be a clam, or at least look like I was doing something productive. I dug my clammer into the sand with extreme effort (much harder than it looks) and when I pulled it out I was less than optimistic that I had actually caught anything. I carried it away from the waves and released the sand from the cylinder. To my amazement…there in the heaping pile of sand was a clam…an actual clam!!! It was EXHILERATING!!! I screamed and shouted and jumped up and down…I’m pretty sure that everyone on the beach within a two mile radius heard that I had caught my first clam.
I would like to say that I went on to catch my quota, but I’m afraid that I was only able to catch one. TJ ended up catching about 10 clams, and Gary made up the rest. On our way to the car Gary’s cousin asked us how we ended up doing. Being as excited as I was on my catch I informed him that we met our quota, and by “we” that really meant Gary. I also told him that I did catch one…and he responded back with “I know…I heard you…I think we all heard you.” I was rather embarrassed, but still on cloud nine refusing to let anything get me down. We ended up walking away with 45 clams we would be shortly enjoying for dinner!!!
The rest of the weekend was complete bliss! We went shopping, ate fish and chips at the Loose Caboose (literally inside of an unused train car), watched movies, and woke up to the sound of the ocean waves crashing down on the sand; it was a much needed break from the everyday mundane routine. It is vacations like this that really make you take a step back and appreciate good friends and God’s beautiful creations!