Beach trip successful, thanks to little prayer

The Sunday Column

Even though I am the last person to provide a religious viewpoint, I can tell you this: The power of prayer is alive and well in my household.

And by just having me write this, I know faith works because yours truly is still alive.

Earlier this year, my family was invited to vacation at a beach house in North Carolina (the Outer Banks) by our good friends, the Dibert family, during the last week in July.

I am not an ocean person, but Mrs. Franco and our four kids love the beach. We had not been to one since 2009, but the trip to Dewey Beach in Delaware left a wonderful impression.

Even though I said yes — back in January — the first thing I thought about was hurricane season. So I started watching The Weather Channel … seven months ago. Did you know they have hurricane shows on a weekly basis on The Weather Channel?

However, I did not do enough research, and obviously I did not pay enough attention in earth science class back at BG — sorry John Frederick, you are still a great teacher — because I either forgot, or did not know, that the Outer Banks is called just that because it is surrounded by the ocean on both sides.

Did I mention that I hate large amounts of water, minus the old “Big Gulp” drink that you could get at a convenience store?

At least at Dewey Beach, if a giant sea monster rises out of the ocean, I can run toward land and hide. There is no place to hide when you are surrounded by the ocean. You just get eaten, or stepped on, by Godzilla!

The first day there brought a giant rainstorm with flooded roads so we couldn’t go anywhere, which also meant the giant sea monsters could basically surf their way to our house, right on the beach on Nova Road. And since it was a three-story home, and I was on the top floor most of the time, they could snack on me without having to even bend over.

There were these giant sand dunes that we visited one day — Jockey’s Ridge — where you just hiked across hot sand with the temps hovering around 90 degrees. Oh, great. Let’s re-enact a scene from “Lawrence of Arabia,” preferably not the ones where people who knew Peter O’Toole died.

And on the next to last day there, Ann Marie said we were going to Ocracoke Island, which was good for me until she said we had to drive our van onto a ferry and we had to be the first ones there so we could get on first and be the first off the ferry.

Scott Franco does not put his van on a boat and go out into the ocean. That’s like putting a big hunk of meat on a platter for the sea monsters to eat off of the boat.

But I did have several enjoyable moments there over our seven-day stay. I prayed to my mother all that week that we’d get there safely, that we remained safe there and that we’d return to Blair County safely.

We did.

She answered my prayers, and I’ve prayed to her so much since her passing in May, I think she is still working just as hard as when she was here with us.

Of course, we got home to Blair County on Saturday morning, Aug. 4, just in time to clean the water out of our basement because of the storms that took place here while we were gone.

I just figured my mom needed a vacation, and she could only take care of one prayer at a time.

Sports writer Scott Franco writes a monthly column for the Mirror.


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