Last week my family and I trekked the 8 hours (or 10 hours if you are riding with a six year-old) to Oklahoma and experienced 112 degree temperatures and pina colada snow cones that could have actually been made in heaven. However, from the look of the lady's face who made my snow cone, I deduced that it was not heaven at all, rather a small shack in the middle of the prairie on the hottest day ever.
This reunion had been in the planning stages for months. My cuz Nathan (what up, cuz?) planned an amazing golf tournament with hamburgers and trophies. We also had a talent show that should have been its own reality TV episode and a few late-night card games that made all of my aunts cry with hysteria. I love hysterical aunts. They are the best.
We also spent four consecutive days at the Gage Beach. What? You didn't know there was a beach in northwest Oklahoma? Well there is. And it is glorious. And it is where I spent every afternoon trying my best to get as tan as possible while not eating every frozen Snickers available. It was really hard.
For those of you who love a history lesson, I have one for you. In 1918, during an attempt to find oil, an artesian lake was found just below the surface of the ground. So the people of Gage came up with a brilliant idea to help beat the heat in the long summer days: build a ginormous swimming pool. The sides are made of cement that are covered with moss and the bottom is full of sand. Everyday fresh artesian water is pumped into the pool and filtered out into surrounding ponds. It is ice cold but when the sidewalk feels like you are walking on the sun, it is perfect and refreshing.
Until the hypothermia sets in.
I have swum in this pool every year since I was born. I even see people there that I went to kindergarten with years ago. And you also see people there who wear basketball shorts, cut-off camouflage t-shirts with cowboy boots too. But that is besides the point. It is an amazing representation of humanity, cut-offs and all. And when all 32,892 cousins of mine show up, they make enough revenue to last them all year. It's just our little contribution to the economy.
The only bummer from the entire weekend was that fireworks were banned this year because of drought. I don't even know what to say about other than I found comfort in a bowl(s) of homemade strawberry ice cream. With fudge.
And maybe a brownie or nine.
Tomorrow I will highlight the golf tournament for you because it very well could have been the MOST FUN I HAVE EVER HAD IN MY LIFE EVER. Partially because I was with my family who I love and adore and partially because my team won. Take that, suckas.