If you take just the opposite of that, you'll get - well - me. Both my Mom and Dad were from Navy families. My Mom then grew up in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey and even though they raised my brother and myself in the most beautiful part of Ohio, it almost felt as though we had ocean water coursing through our veins. I was blessed to grow up in the rolling hills of Southeastern Ohio where it was as though God painted the trees with color each Fall, then transformed the world into a Wintery Fairlyland soon after.
We were also blessed to visit Mom's whole side of the family in New Jersey each year where we lived on the beach...or as Mom would call it...the "shore". We also went to my Dad's side in Hilton Head Island, SC where his parents lived upon retirement. I was a nature kid.
Does it matter that Adam and I are polar opposites? Not really I guess. If you put me in the middle of a city I would be lost without him. If you put Adam in the middle of the woods he would swear there was a snake somewhere nearby.
He went into the Air Force just like his Dad and that's when I met him. We were married right before 9/11 and being a Newlywed, I stood frozen as I watched him go to war. When he returned, we went on a three day cruise before we had to move for his new orders in Texas.
Where am I going with all of this? Well, one of the ports that the ship stopped was on a picturesque Caribbean beach. I had never seen anything like it. You could walk into the water for what seemed like forever as the crystal clear blue surrounded you. No matter how far you went, you could still see your feet.
Regardless, Adam didn't seem to love it. Wondering why he didn't want to go out very far in the ocean, he shook his head and said, "Just because the water's clear, doesn't mean there still aren't sharks".
It was hard not to giggle.
We decided to sit on the white sandy beach, listen to the waves, breathe the air and feel the sun. It couldn't get much better.
Adam watched as a small baby crab passed us by and he continued to sit up on his towel as though he saw something else.
"Hey, what do you think that is?"
Trying to see through squinted vision, I had no idea what he was talking about.
"Don't you see that? It's something shiny...right there...look!"
I didn't see anything.
Adam got up and walked towards the water. He stopped short, bent down and started to dig in the sand.
Coming back, he had a handful of sand and he was pushing it around with his finger.
"Look! There's something in here!"
He was right. There was something clumped in his hand. We got up and went to the water to wash it through, wondering what it could be.
As he carefully lifted his fist through the water and turned it to open, a tiny gold ring appeared. At first I thought it was an earring but then we realized that it was a child's ring. It was so small that it wouldn't fit on a pinky - and at the top - there was a little diamond.
"Oh no! Some girl lost this!" It hit me especially because when I was young - I lost my favorite necklace in the sand. It had three hearts on it...pink, yellow and blue. My Mom and I looked for hours but we never found it.
Adam and I walked the beach asking people if the ring was theirs. Nobody claimed it. When we went back on the ship we took it to the lost and found. The woman behind the counter smiled and said, "Do you have any idea how many cruises ago that could have been lost? There's no way to find out who it belongs to." We gave her our information and told her to contact us just in case. She never did.
Heading back home, we wondered what to do with it. We didn't have kids at the time but decided that if we ever had a little girl, we would give it to her when she was old enough. We would tell her about the time we found a buried treasure in the sand that had us hope and dream of her.
Fast forward to today and our baby girl just turned four years old. The ring would fit her perfectly.
As luck would have it, months ago, my parents booked a Disney Cruise for our whole family to go on. We're getting ready for it soon and the kids have absolutely no idea. It couldn't have come at a better time as Adam and I deal with tests and Doctor appointments this week.
We've already packed the ring to take with us so we can give it to Lauren on the beach. It's hard to believe that we found it over a decade ago - and we're finally going to give it to our daughter.
I guess it really is true how they say that "Opposites attract".
Sometimes even when you take a city boy...a nature girl...and put them together, one may never know. The greatest treasures of all just might be discovered.