Black Girls Go to the Beach?
As a eastsider who lives more south, I sometimes forget to my north is a large body of water with beaches. Granted, Cleveland beaches are far from tropical, however, if I ever need to get my beach on, I can.
I explored one of our beaches recently and I must say it satisfied my little beach craving. My girl was headed to Cancun and it made me a little jealous that I couldn’t go so she invited me to hang out with her at Euclid Beach on a soft Sunday. We packed up the car with a few snacks, our folding chairs and headed east on Lakeshore.
I noticed families with kids, groups of young folks and clearly romantic couples playing in the water, chilling on the beach, and having a great time. It was a hot day and walking on the sand felt like walking on hot coals. We couldn’t help but laugh at everybody walking past us as best they could without screaming about the hot a - - sand!
I still have this picture in my head of two little girls struggling to make it to the water. The older one carrying the younger who clearly wasn’t about that sand life; both of them trying to get to the water, and crying about the sand. The older girl finally mustered up all her strength, grabbed the younger one and made a mad dash to the water. I was so rooting for them!
I was a little timid about getting in the water. I’ve been conditioned to think that you don’t get in Lake Erie let alone swim in it. But because of that sand and all the fun I saw other people having, I put my feet in it and eventually more of my body. I sat where the water meets the shore to cool off. I still couldn’t imagine dunking my head in the water. Even though I drink tap water in Cleveland, I was afraid of getting Lake Erie water in my mouth. Anyway...
Okay Cleveland MetroParks, y’all impressed me. The beach was clean but the sand wasn’t like white and pretty. It was a little rocky, particularly by the shore. There were several lifeguards on duty who made sure people didn’t go beyond the designated swimming area. A few lucky folks set up beach camps under one of the big blue public umbrellas. (We started out umbrella-less, but when another group left, we ran in the hot a - - sand to claim it! We weren’t totally beach ready and that umbrella looked like our oasis!)
Before the summer is out, y’all need to plan a trip to one of Cleveland’s beaches on the beautiful shores of Lake Erie. And when you do, make sure you bring snacks, a big umbrella, sunscreen, a good book maybe, some towels, and a blanket to rest your feet on in case there’s hot a - - sand. Be safe and listen for swimming advisories. And most importantly, bring some appreciation that our city has beaches that we can all enjoy.