This spring break, I went on a 10 day dream vacation at a boujee beach club in Palm Beach, Florida, with my three best friends, Grace, Tris and Maeve.
Grace’s dad is a member of the club — the Ocean Ridge Beach Club — and owns a two-bedroom condo overlooking the beach. From the balcony, we had a perfect view of the glistening blue ocean and the perfectly manicured lush green lawn.
I had never been to a beach club before, but the experience was nothing short of amazing. My daily routine at the Ocean Ridge Beach Club went something like this:
Every day, the four of us would be woken up by loud music, courtesy of Grace’s dad, anywhere between 10 a.m. and noon. I always slept in the latest, and if I didn’t wake up from the music, I woke up by one of my friends lying on top of me and telling me to wake up.
After we got ready for the beach, we would head down to the pool. One of the club rules is that you can’t wear denim, so our cover-ups were more preppy then usual. We also had to wear shoes, which proved a problem for me when absent-minded me somehow lost my Birkenstocks during our day trip to Fort Lauderdale.
At the pool, we ate lunch with Grace’s dad. I ate a caesar salad probably every day, and everyone at the table would make fun of me when it was my turn to order. Over lunch, we talked about everything under the sun. Sometimes we discussed pop culture and news, like the Olivia Jade college scandal, and sometimes Grace’s dad would tell us stories about his years as a paramedic. He also talked about fish a lot – that man loves to fish. Sometimes he told us stories about Grace as a kid. One afternoon, he told us about how Grace used to idolize Snooki from Jersey Shore, which she denied, but he also told us that she grew up watching the Kardashians, which she confirmed.
We would spend the next few hours tanning and swimming in the ocean or the pool. I love swimming pools, and I think the pool at the club might have been the best pool I’ve ever been in. It was always refreshing, even when it was kind of cloudy and windy out, and for some reason the water felt so much smoother than other pools. The ocean was also fun, more so than my usual ocean spot in Delaware.
In Florida, there are these huge black rocks that I liked to stand on, even though I almost fell off every time whenever a wave crashed. There were so many beautiful shells under the rocks, which Tris and I utilized when we held a sandcastle-making competition, which we definitely would have won if we had a proper judge.
Then we would go back to the condo to shower and assess our tans. We fought over the two showers, but I was always last because I always forgot to call it first. We shared clothes and makeup, just like we do at school, but this time it was easier because all of our stuff was in the same room.
We would always eat dinner early, at around six or seven in the evening. We would pile in the minivan Grace’s dad rented and he would take us to dinners all around Palm Beach and Del Rey. My favorite dinner was probably when we stayed at the club for the dinner buffet and bingo night. Since it was at the club, we had to dress up, so we rolled into bingo night in skirts and heels, ready to win big money.
We didn’t win big money, though. I was beyond furious when the winner of every round was a child or young teen who, in my opinion, did not deserve the $300 cash prize, at least not as much as I did.
My friends and I formed a plan to catch one of the iguanas that frequented the club and put one in the club manager’s store, as revenge. Grace’s dad did not approve of our plan, but he did tell his club friends, who thought it was hilarious.
After dinner, we would go back to our room. We watched movies and had deep talks on the balcony. One night, we went to the beach and sat in the lifeguard chairs. We talked and laughed under the huge moon. We looked up at the stars, clear and bright in the coastal sky — I hadn’t seen the big dipper that clearly in a long time.
I remember thinking that I couldn’t believe I had only known these girls for two years, and that I had lived 18 whole years without them. The four of us have gotten so close in the past two years, it’s hard to remember life without them.
At first, I was nervous for spring break. I live in Maryland, so I rarely have time to fly home to visit my family. But I am so glad that I went on spring break with my best friends. I can always go home — Maryland will always still be there for me, but I only have two more years with my three best friends, and I want to spend every last second that I can with them.