Thursday, 1 August 2013

Mid Week Holiday

I wasn't called in to work today and was sitting at home this morning thinking about all the things I ought to do...I have an office that needs sorting out rather desperately, reading I ought to do, washing, know how it is. Luckily I hadn't written a list so it was easy to re-frame my day as an opportunity to go for a walk. I've been meaning to walk to Fisher's Point for a long time and here, the first day of August with just the tiniest smattering of snow on the highlands and the sun shining brightly, was the perfect day. 

I soon rustled up a partner in crime to accompany me and we headed off mid-morning. It's only a two hour walk so there was no rush. The drive to the end of the road was long and bumpy but deserted so there was no need to hurry. One other car in the car park warned of other adventurers and we found a couple of men fishing on the rocks when we first headed off. Friendly waves and nods were all that were necessary in this vast, beautiful wilderness; they got on with their fishing and we got on with our walk.

Magic was all about...for anyone with an eye for texture and line it is a banquet! My camera was out time and time again but there were too many wondrous sights to capture them all. Everywhere I looked were the elegant twisted limbs of gale-worn trees and shrubs, kelp abandoned by the sea, shells collected in corners by pushy waves and currents. My senses reeled with the pungent smell of seaside saltiness and rotting kelp. The sun shone, the breeze was light as a feather brushing my skin. Heading overland at one point into a dark, damp forest dressed in moss and several degrees cooler than the beach was quite a surprise really. I hadn't expected such contrast in a matter of metres.

We sat in silence at the point of destination and took in the birds (sooty oyster catchers, gulls, a heron perched high in a naked tree overlooking the coast) and the placid ocean caressing the shore. The noise of the waves breaking on the rocky coast was a little more than the lapping in the bay, but nothing compared to what it's capable of with a good wind blowing. The peace was enormous and the only thought I had was a wondering what it would actually be like to have no thought. I figured it would be pretty good and it was sad that this lone one got in the way. It was enough just to be. It was enough just to see, to smell, to hear.

On the way back my mate walked ahead and I rounded a bend on the beach and found it so warm...the water so absolutely crystal clear, the rocks so clean and smooth, the white sand shining brightly ...I took off my backpack and reached down to touch the water. It was cool but not freezing as I thought it might be. I was hot from walking...I wanted so badly to douse myself in that refreshing coolness. It took a large dose of courage but I decided to take the plunge. Down to my undies (scary thought for those that know me!) and in I went. It was fabulous just to do it. I just got wet. Splashed a bit of water here and there, washed my face and then got out and sat on the rock in the sun. Soon covered up again and underway, I felt so great! Spur of the moment madness can be so good for the soul. My mate mentioned later that he thought he'd seen a mermaid. More likely a young whale or a seal I think. But I know better than to challenge him on that.

In the car on the way home I sighed a deep sigh and felt like I'd been on holidays. We were only on the beach and walking for about two and a half hours. It's amazing how relaxing and energising a couple of hours can be. What do you do to refresh yourself? Do you take the time to break routine and get out for a walk...or a crazy winter swim (it was very quick but very good!)? Right now I can highly recommend it! Oh, and it could be an idea to pack a towel.

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