OREGON, Salishan Golf Resort & Spa – As you may notice, this post has no pictures of children or babies. Not even a snapshot of yours truly doing as the title says: walking on the beach. As a matter of fact, there are no pictures of any people on this beach. At all. Which is why it turned out to be such a memorable walk for me.
During our family’s recent stay at Salishan Golf Resort and Spa, we had the opportunity to visit one of Oregon’s most secluded beaches, which lies on the narrow peninsula between the Pacific and Siletz Bay. It can only be reached by residents living in the gated Salishan community and guests of Salishan Resort. I was intrigued.
But to get out onto the peninsula, we needed to make the short drive from the resort, and when push came to shove, I couldn’t get my kids to budge. The girls were having such a fantastic time at the lodge, and most especially using the indoor swimming pool and enormous hot tub, that they literally burst into tears when I told them we could swim more… after the beach.
Tears? They’d made a new friend from Toronto, my middle-kid’s near-identical twin, and they couldn’t wait to meet up with her again at the pool. If they couldn’t do that, they wanted at least to go back to the children’s activity center and see about doing some crafts.
I was stunned. What kid cries when you tell them it’s time to go to the beach? Suddenly I had two on my hands doing just that. Granted, we live just a short drive from many beaches, not to mention a bay. And the fog that socked us in that morning at Salishan, at the end of an Oregon summer heat wave, was reminiscent of the notorious San Francisco stuff we’d fled setting out on this trip.
I humbly accepted that it made perfect sense that, for the kids, the sprawling resort set in the coastal forest with its elevated outdoor catwalks, Game Zone, and swimming paradise were more exciting by far. They were having a blast. Who was I to tell them to stop having fun and drag them to, of all places, the beach?
It suddenly reminded me of a very important topic I take up in Travels with Baby, about planning your family vacations to make sure that everybody gets what they need. It was clear what the kids needed. And as I saw that Tim was just as happy to give more lessons at the pool, I realized that the only one in our crew who really “needed” to hit the beach that morning was me. And I think I needed it even more than I suspected.
We bid cheerful adieus, and I loaded the baby up for our drive through the gate onto the peninsula. I passed one cheerful woman out walking her dog as I parked and loaded up Baby Theo in the Ergo, where he immediately went to sleep nestled against me and in the cozy shelter of my jacket. A short sandy path took me out onto this lovely beach, where the only other souls I saw shuttled by on a distant fishing charter boat. And I walked, and I walked, with only the sounds of Pacific waves shushing at the shore, and only gulls for company.
It was magic. And just what I needed—for just a little while—during our vacation.
Shelly Rivoli, author of the award-winning Travels with Baby guidebooks