Ryan sat on the side of his bed staring down at the sandals on his feet. Sandals, I can't believe I'm wearing sandals, he thought, I can't believe I even own sandals, let alone two different kinds of sneakers, cleats, dress shoes, boots, even slippers. And none of them were cheap, bought in a discount store or asked for. They just appeared, along with the expensive pants and fancy suits. Even his tee shirts. He was used to tee shirts that came three in a package. Not anymore. Ryan knew even his tee shirts weren't cheap. If he were still in Chino, he'd never wear sandals. He never even owned sandals. But this wasn't Chino. He returned to his life in Newport. Sometimes he still couldn't believe it. Any of it. Not the mess with Teresa, not her fake pregnancy to get him to go back to Chino, not the fact the Cohens took him back with open arms. None of it. The summer had only just begun, and Ryan was already worn out and tired.

As he looked back down at his overpriced sandals, Ryan also couldn't believe it was six o'clock in the morning on a Saturday, and he was awake and contemplating footwear.

But it was because he had choosen this life in Newport that had him up at six o'clock in the morning, dressed in his overpriced sandals, tee shirt and a bathing suit. Sandy had been bugging Ryan to try surfing with him, until Ryan finally agreed. Ryan felt like he had no choice. Sandy and Kirsten were very understanding and kind during the whole Teresa diseaster, and he felt like he had no choice but do what ever they asked of him. Even if that meant getting up at 6 o'clock on a Saturday morning to go surfing.

As Ryan shuffled into the kitchen for a much needed cup of coffee, he noticed Sandy already up, dressed, ready and waiting. One look at Sandy, and suddenly Ryan felt a whole lot better. Yeah, maybe he was wearing sandals but at least his bathing suit and tee shirt were dark blue. Sandy had on the same sandals, but he also had on a white bathing suit covered in big orange flowers and some awful gray tee shirt with something about the Bronx on it. And at six o'clock in the morning, a Saturday morning, and without his cup of coffee, Ryan could care less what the tee shirt said.

"Hey, you're up!" Sandy said, a little too cheerfully, "I thought maybe you baled on me!"

"You mean baling was an option?" Ryan mumbled, grabbing his cup for coffee.

Sandy laughed, "Nope, not anymore. Come on. You're up. You're dressed. It'll be great. I promise you, there's nothing like it. Getting out, catching a few waves. It clears the mind and its good for the body. You'll love it."

"It's just," Ryan started to explain, again, "I think I'm too old to learn how to surf. Seth said he was like eight when he learned." Ryan had already tried explaining this to Sandy before, so he pretty much knew what Sandy's response was going to be, and he was right.

"Yeah," Sandy said, "But remember, I didn't start until I was sixteen. There weren't too many opportunities to surf in the Bronx. But once I came out here, and caught my first wave, well, the rest, they say, is history."

"But it's six o'clock in the morning. On a Saturday. During summer vacation." Ryan said. He knew he was whining, but he really wasn't much of a morning person.

"Now you sound like Seth," Sandy told him, "Surfing early in the morning is the best time. No one is out there, the waves are at their best, and it gets you going for the day. And you're the one who wanted to wait until summer vacation."

"But it's six o'clock in the morning." Ryan again reminded him before continuing, "Besides, I, uh, thought you weren't supposed to go in the ocean at dawn and dusk."

Sandy looked strangely at Ryan, and then asked, "Why?"

Ryan knew what he was about to say sounded stupid, even before he said it,

"I saw this show, on the Discovery channel, that says sharks like to feed close to shore at dawn and dusk so that's when you should avoid the water."

First Sandy laughed and then he told Ryan,

"Now you really do sound like Seth. Next thing I know you'll be whining about swimming with the fish like Kirsten. I've been surfing in the morning for twenty-five years, and I've never even seen a shark. So I doubt you have anything to worry about. Come on, it'll be fun. I promise, nothing's going to happen other then the fact you'll learn that you love surfing, and then at least one of my boys will appreciate the sport for what it is."

Great, Ryan thought. How can I say No when he calls me one of his boys, especially when I know he really means it? I really hate when he does that. Then Ryan sighed. Well, not really, he thought. Only at six o'clock in the morning. On a Saturday morning. During summer vacation.

Sandy interrupted Ryan's thoughts, "Come on. Let's move. The boards are already in the car."

Ryan looked at him very skeptically, "And nothing's going to happen?" he asked.

Sandy just smiled and put his arm around Ryan, and as they headed out the door, he told him,

"Ryan, I promise. Nothing's going to happen. You'll love it!"