Summertime always meant going to the cabin and endless trips to the Melville Beach store when I was a growing up.
Every morning we would rise with the sun and sneak out of the cabin to catch up with Grandpa on his way to the beach to fish. Cast after cast and no luck we’d head over to the store and wait for the owner to unlock the doors.
I can still smell the muffins fresh out of the oven and the lavender perfume the owner’s wife would wear. Every day rain or shine it was the same; we’d dangle our feet as we sat on the “spinny” stools by the counter and eat our treat while Grandpa told us his plans for the day.
Our days were full of swimming and sandcastles on the beach with our “summer friends” with a number of freezies and homemade popsicles thrown in to help us cool down. As the sun went down, we would get ready for bed. In our pajamas we would make one more trip to the store for a small ice cream with sprinkles. We’d finish off the night curled up in a lawn chair listening to stories around the campfire.
So much has changed since those days. Lives got busier, my feet no longer dangle from the spinny chairs, and it’s near impossible to find a small ice cream cone for twenty-five cents.
Yet, as the summers go by, I see similar memories being made as a new generation of Grandpas visit our beach store and new sandy feet dangle from our spinny chairs at the counter. Each morning the muffins come out of the oven and I open the doors just before nine o’clock.
These are the traditions and memories that take you back. They are the reason I came back and will always greet you with a smile at the Melville Beach Store.