I don’t usually participate in WordPress’s daily prompt challenge but today’s word BEACH made me want to try it.
Is there anybody who doesn’t love a beach. Have you ever heard anybody say – I don’t like the sea? I once met a young man in Zambia who’d never seen the ocean. He asked me to describe it to him. I told him about the tides, the beach and the waves and the sport of surfing.
“What is surfing ?” he asked. He was my bird guide and we were in a canoe on the Zambezi River. I was not sure how I could explain it. “You’d love it,” I said. “You know the thrill you get from riding the rapids? It’s that kind of feeling, I think but different as you stand on the board and ride the waves.” He laughed because he just couldn’t picture it.
I grew up on a beach and the sun, the sand and the sea is part of who I am. In my very early years I lived right opposite Fish Hoek Beach. As children we could just walk across a road and a level crossing and the beach was our playground. In those days children had so much more freedom than the kids of today. No adults accompanied us and once we were there we were sure to meet up with other unsupervised youngsters. We lived a car-ride away from the beach when I was raising my own kids but it was close enough to go after school and we did so regularly – the beach had everything a child desired – a play park, sand and water and dozens of other kids to play with. And for Mom – wow – you’d always meet other moms down there and we’d all chat and watch the kids enjoy themselves. I wonder how moms without beaches cope – a beach is a calming place – a grouchy kids becomes all smile the minute her toes touch the sand.
The beach was also part of my teenage days. It was the place to play beach games and meet your friends and what courtship would be the same without a romantic walk along a moonlit beach.
And now I still love the beach – I’m near to another one now – Struisbaai at the tip of Africa – and it’s the longest one in South Africa. It would take a day to walk the entire length of it. And the sea is warm and there’s the prettiest fishing harbour that buzzes with activity. Hardly a day goes by that I don’t take a walk along the beach winter or summer. Summer of course is the best when the sea is warm and swimming is pleasant.
I love the wild, the mountains, the bush and the desert but I need the beach – it is part of my being.