An empty beach, blue sky, calm sea. A hot, sunny, summer’s day.
Some people’s idea of heaven. Closer to my idea of hell. No shade. The baking sun burning my skin and making me sweat. My eyes half-closed against the sunlight reflected off the water and sand. No respite from the heat other than the occasional promise of a cooling sea breeze. Nothing to do but slowly cook on the barren beach. The clouds are pretty though.
A fragment of the South Wales coastline. Vegetation, greenery, rocks. It’s still too hot really, but at least the scenery is more interesting and there are coastal paths to walk along. A much nicer location to watch the sea from.
And I am much happier watching it than being in it.
I’ve never spent much time by the sea. A few trips to Skegness growing up near Lincoln, a week in Bognor Regis with a friend and her children, and a handful of day trips out around the South Wales coast.
The one thing I remember about going to Skegness as a young child, other than memories of donkey rides and rock pools that may simply be memories of photographs, is being warned about the way the sea floor falls away, cliff-like, not that far from the water line. That and tales of strong currents dragging people out to sea. And of tides coming in fast and cutting people off from the shore. So, not being a particularly strong swimmer, I never venture further than I can comfortably paddle.
I love the idea of the sea, but I will admire it from the solid ground of the beautiful British coast that it surrounds.