Let me give you a bit of background before I show you this video.

I grew up in New Hampshire, and I've spent most of my life here. Yeah, I was born in Methuen, Mass, and the first few years of my life lived in Lawrence then North Andover, but when I was 6, my parents and I moved to Salem. I was there until I went to college and then even for a while after I got back, moved to Malden, Mass for a couple years, then up to Dover for over a handful, then Tulsa, Oklahoma (one of these things is not like the other), and finally now, back home in the 603.

So, all that said, needless to say I've grown up with the beach basically no more than 30-45 minutes away from me. Every Saturday during summer vacation, while my parents were both working, I'd go to my cousin's for the day, and my Aunt and Uncle would routinely take us to the beach if the weather was good. Generally, we'd go to Wallis Sands, and then hop over to Hampton after for dinner, walking around the strip, and generally watching The Continentals, B-Street Bombers, or whoever else played at the Hatch Shell.

On a lucky Saturday, they'd take us to Salisbury so we could play in the arcade and have our "dessert" be either Tripoli's or Cristy's (I like them both, but if I have to pick one, I'm a Tripoli's guy through and through). Those were literally some of the best times of my childhood, so, when I saw Cece Francis drop this post in the u Local New Hampshire Facebook group of a mega high tide at Hampton Beach, a bunch of childhood memories came flooding back all at once.

See, when my cousin and I were kids (even now as an adult -- and I'm only speaking for myself at this point, since I don't know if he still feels this way as an adult now), our favorite thing to do at the beach was ride waves. We would spend as much time in ocean as possible, even if it was frigid. I mean, it's a lot easier to deal with freezing cold ocean water when your body goes numb, right?

But we would be in the ocean riding waves (or body surfing, if that's how you know it as) for HOURS. The only reason we'd stop is because his parents would call us up to eat lunch, then as soon as we did and did the ole digestion break, we were back in the water. Always looking for the biggest, tallest, most massive waves to ride.

We had this theory that Salisbury had the biggest waves, so we would always beg his parents to bring us there. Every now and then we'd end up there for a beach day and then hang around the Center at night, but for the most part, it was always Wallis Sands. Which still had some pretty decent waves. Plus, one of other favorite things to do other than riding waves would be walking all the way to the end of the beach (crossing into different beaches, technically -- I think we crossed over Jenness, Rye, maybe a couple of others) until there was nothing but rocks, flip the rocks over and look for different ocean life.

We would walk all the way back to our blanket, carrying pails filled with sand, ocean water, and whatever we found. Usually it was just crabs and periwinkles, but every now and then we'd score some starfish or sea urchins. We'd keep them in the pail for a little bit, then right before we left, dumped them back into the ocean. Actually, it was doing this that inspired one of my tattoos (since everything on my arm is related to family, but in an unconventional way.)


Isn't it crazy how one simple post from a stranger of a wave crashing over a wall at Hampton Beach can cause so many amazing memories to come back? It honestly makes me miss my childhood, since I've always seen growing up as a trap, but it also makes me excited to hopefully have a family someday to be able to do with my kids (and their cousins), what my Aunt and Uncle let my cousin and I experience.

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