Saturday, September 01, 2012

Going to the beach

Scarborough colonnade

Everyone knows what you do at the beach: it’s all to do with sandcastles and paddling and eating ice cream. Well it is if you go there on holiday. But if you live at the seaside it’s different. For one thing you don’t want to share it with hordes of other people who come to stay and spoil the view and get in your way and don’t understand what it’s really all for.  People who sit in the sunshine with knotted hankies on their heads and expose their pasty, factory skin until they turn pink as peppermint rock, then slouch painfully back to their B&Bs with sand in their shoes and soggy knees where they didn’t turn up their trousers quite far enough before they waded in. They always look dejected as they return to their evening-meal-included and no-children-in-the-bar. Not like us.

We avoid the beach in summer. We wait patiently from Easter to October for them to leave, and then we have our fun. They never walk alone along the sand, leaning into a biting northerly wind, wrapped in woolly hat and scarf but smiling as the ocean air fills their lungs to bursting with life-boosting ozone.  They never see waves crash against the concrete defences and rise high over the railings before landing smack back down on the walkway. They never laugh and run, backwards, away from the torrent, to escape with just a smattering of spray across their faces, licking their salty lips, before turning, content, towards a harbourside café where they buy Bovril or hot chocolate and wrap their hands around the mug for warmth,  matching the glow of delight already rising from inside.

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I'm a bit busy at the moment and I'm not sure if I'll have internet access so I'm posting some things in advance. This was written a few weeks ago for Thinking Ten.

2 comments:

Stew said...

It's sad that the visitors will never know this side of the romance that is the sea.

However, it is as equally sad that locals will never understand the attraction that brings the hordes.

Enjoy Everything. It's all we have.

snafu said...

Yes, we got it all to ourselves and sometimes the winter weather was not very different from the summer weather.