Meet the Mariners, class of 1972, the year of Pink Floyd, UCLA Basketball and running grunions. Before cell phones, video games and Facebook, these Mariners came of age beachcombing the shore and surfing the tide of Cortez, a small patch of sand located in Imperial Beach, the southwesterly-most city in the United States.
It is 1992 and the class of 1972 is back to relive old memories and make new ones. Sabra and Marcus are back, unknowingly they are staying in adjoining rooms at the same beachside villa. Ronnie and Eva are here, but so is wife, Marla. She is from Florida and sinks in Pacific sand like a stone. Shana and Carl are back, but not together. Carl went for a swim one evening at Cortez and never came back. It wasn’t until three days later that Shana and the other Mariners learned of his drowning.
Like a modern day A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Mariner’s nature intrudes as the order that all of our individual dreams succumb. In the case of Cortez, the sea is personified by Ariel, an award winning sand mermaid. Like the sea, she brings answers. ”There’s a song from the sea. If you listen closely, you can hear the words-better here than there hodads-back to the sea where all things began.”
As it turns out the Mariners of 1972 return to the natural order of their lives, realizing that Cortez, the tiny patch of sand where they came of age, goes with them.
Viola: a shipwrecked girl (any age).
Marcus: a good looking ex surf-bum in his late thirties or early fourties, but looks younger because of the way he carries himself.
Brook: a displaced debutante in her early thirties.
Sabra: a gorgeous & fit beach girl in her late thirties.
Grey: an amicable Midwesterner who tries very hard to fit in (in his mid-40s).
Ariel: the Mermaid
Ron: Marcus’ high school friend. He is not as cool as Marcus, but his boyish traits make him charming; in his late 3thirties, but looks younger.
Marla: a displaced “Easterner” who is not conducive to the attitudes and morays of the west; in her early fourties but acts older.
Carl: another friend of Marcus; he is the boy from the sea. He drowned when he was eighteen, so his age and looks have been preserved.
Shana: ex cheerleader and very cute. She is in love with her memory of Carl. She is in her late thirties but looks much younger.
Eva: a beach girl and friend to Shana. Eva is one of the first women to surf big waves with the boys. She is in her late thiritess but looks younger.