Saturday, January 19, 2013

"A little sea-bathing would set me up forever."

The sea is a powerful thing.  It gives us all joy and solace in different ways.

Today one of us dives straight in, to splash and play in the waves; another dons goggles and begins an odyssey around the cove - searching and exploring the sea life.  Yet another eases himself in and moves gradually with the waves, slowly becoming one with the life of the ocean, his body adrift, gently swaying in amongst the seaweed.  Still others are content to sit under a shady tree and observe.

I begin to comb the beach for shells.  Something about their shapes, their strength, their gentle colours and textures, gives me comfort.  As does sinking my feet into the sand - problems seep into it's grains and my cares are eroded away, escaping between my toes.

Today it's a certain kind of shell I'm after.  Spotted years ago on the same beach, I remember it's shape fondly and begin to sift the surface of the sand with my eyes - alert only to its shape, its texture, its smooth white arc catching in the afternoon sunlight.  Before long, it's delicate fronds fill my hand and they jingle together like pennies in a purse - the sea's own currency on offer for those who care for such treasures.  Jewels created by the sea itself - time rolling by and tumbling endlessly to leave just the backbone of what was once the home of a faceless creature.

I discover ample pockets to bring home my treasures - carefully carrying my spoils to their new home, where their beauty can be appreciated daily.

The sea is a gentle thing.

Title by Jane Austen, from Pride and Prejudice

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