My Seaside Story

For 30 years, our dream for Seaside has been the dream we have for life itself.  Simplicity, grace, elegance. Fashions have changed. Wars have come and gone.  And a wave of technology has changed the way we exist. But the fact remains that Seaside reminds us of what is truly real and significant in life. A simple connection to family and friends and the world around us. The story of Seaside is the story of lives touched by this simple philosophy. We are all Seaside, because we all share the same dream.  And, perhaps, Seaside continues to help us live that dream. The dream of a simple, beautiful life. These are our Seaside stories. Stories of laughter and sadness. Romance and loneliness. Families and friends. Traditions and discoveries. My Seaside Story is a yearlong storytelling experience, a setting for us to share our stories. For the past three decades, hundreds and hundreds of them have washed ashore.

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The Day I Fell

Posted on February 25th at 7:50 pm 2 Comments

My Seaside story is the story that most dream of and others read in books. This story has been ten years in the making, and it has changed my life for the rest of my life.

Ten years ago I was a Deputy for the Walton County Sheriff’s Office. I worked Seaside as a regular part of my patrol. I would perform security checks for the beachfronts, restaurants, and local business owners. One warm summer night I was checking the beach just off the boardwalk near Bud & Alley’s. I noticed some kids crowded around some beach chairs, and I decided I would check them out to see what they were doing. I started walking towards them, but before I could get within speaking distance, they ran. I chased them in full uniform down the beach. I assure you they were not slow by any means. I instructed them to stop, but they did not.

I followed closely behind yelling, “Stop!” but that didn’t slow them a bit. We were now running down the boardwalk towards the shops and one of the local cafes at the time. I yelled, “Stop!” again as we approached the end of the boardwalk where everyone was shopping and enjoying their dinner for the  evening. I thought to myself, “I think I have them now,” but I could not have been more wrong. One of the kids had a skateboard, and right as  I stepped down off  the walk, he threw the skateboard  down in front of me. Yes, I tripped and went flying through the air! I dropped my radio and flashlight and hit the ground as hard as I could. I cut up my arms, my head, and my uniform was a wreck. I cracked my new watch that I had bought earlier that day. I could not have been more embarrassed at that moment in my life. I stood up with as much dignity as possible. Everyone was looking at me, smiling and laughing as I got up from this horrible moment that some would describe as an epic fail.

I looked into the crowd and tried my best to shake it off while picking up my radio. I’m sure I was as red as I could be, and then I took one last look into the crowd. My arm started to bleed as everyone was still watching me gather myself. I then was approached by the most beautiful girl I have ever seen. This beautiful girl was a waitress at  the cafe I had fallen in front of. She quickly placed a rag on my bleeding arm and asked me if I was ok. I stood there ruffled and tattered in my uniform, adjusting my glasses trying to be a man about the minor injuries I had just endured. I told her I was ok and would be all right. But she quickly disagreed, and said, “No you’re not – you’re bleeding!” I decided very quickly that arguing with this beautiful, brown-eyed girl was not in my best interest. If the truth be told, I really didn’t want to argue with her. I was stuck in the most unbelievable situation in my life. I think anyone would have been ready to get out of there due to the embarrassment, but I could not have been more happy to be in the presence of this angel that stepped out of the crowd to take care of me.

Before I knew it, I was cleaned up, and she placed a band-aid on my minor wounds. I asked her what her name was and told her mine. I looked into her eyes as she looked into mine, and I knew that she was something more than just a citizen that wanted to help me out. I knew right then that I absolutely, positively, beyond a shadow of a doubt had met the most wonderful girl on the earth! I gave her my card as a Deputy of the Walton County Sheriff’s Office, told her thank you, and walked away. As I walked away I said to myself “That was the best mistake I ever made.”

We saw each other from time to time for a while. We both knew at that time there was something strong between us, but we both were in relationships. I had to leave Walton County shortly after for my family. I missed her so badly, and she knew I wanted her in my life. Timing was not on our side until now, ten years later. This beautiful girl that put a band-aid on me at a hard time in my life, has now returned. She kept my card and never gave up looking for me. Life kept us apart for ten long years, but we never forgot that moment at Seaside. That moment happened once in my life, and I know that evening was no accident. It was a life-long gift from God. I never dreamed that I would now have her back in my life after she found me living in a completely different town. That moment in Seaside I didn’t just fall, I fell in love with an angel from God. I love you April!

2 Responses to The Day I Fell

  1. Lin potts says:

    Your story brought tears to my eyes. I want you to be
    Happy , you deserve it!!!

  2. Rachael says:

    What a beautiful story! I wish you both the very best!

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