A special message from your beloved author:
Visiting Santa Monica Beach shot me back to a carefree memory I made in San Diego. I was still in college, and a friend of mine was trusted with the keys to a beachfront condo at Coronado Island. So he invited me over, and we proceeded to play Monopoly for six hours.
By 2 a.m., we decided to turn in, and I said, “Alright, this was cool. I’m going home now.” And he said, “Why not stay the night?” I appreciated the gesture, but I politely declined; I couldn’t reconcile sleeping over when my living quarters were just across the bridge. Besides, I don’t recall more than a single bed at the condo, anyway, so I don’t even know how it would’ve worked out, logistically. Perhaps we would’ve flipped a coin or rolled some dice, maybe even play another game of Monopoly to settle who gets the bed and who gets the floor. Frankly, I preferred to skip this quandary altogether.
So he said, “Alright, seeya later.”
The next day, I saw him at the basketball court, and I said, “How’d it go? It must’ve been great to sleep to the lullaby of ocean waves.”
He said, “No, I went home shortly after you did.”
I said, “Why? People pay good money to stay at a place like that.”
And he said, “I don’t like the ocean.”
And I said, “Don’t you like the sound of crashing waves? That’s nature’s binaural beat.”
And he said, “No,” and he said it like I was the odd one for asking.
And he said, “Do you?”
And I said, “I love it.”
And I said, “Why don’t you like it?”
And he said, “It makes me feel lonely.”
It’s a lame, sentimental story. Lately, I can’t imagine driving half an hour again just to go play Monopoly for six hours. But such were the times, and I just went with the flow.