last hurrah

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We hit the beach last week. A last hurrah before we bid farewell to Summer.

It was cold and foggy, with a little drizzle on and off. We picked Swee up at school and packed into my little RAV, and off we went. There were maybe a dozen cars in the lot when we arrived, and I almost wished we hadn’t come.

And then when we walked down onto the deserted beach, it felt a bit like coming home. I grew up spending weeks at a time on the Jersey shore. Not the shore on tv, but a sleepy island town with beautiful white beaches and wholesome families on vacation. Where the horizon stretched for miles and all you could see was water and sky. The beach here hasn’t felt like that, what with the rocks and pine trees on one side, and the rocks and islands on the other. But last week, blanketed in fog with the hurricane-induced waves crashing on shore, it felt like my beach, and almost like home.

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HomeHow do you get to know a place the way you know the places you grew up? The smells and the feel, almost right, and yet not. Can you intentionally cultivate the knowledge of place that’s naturally born of being a child somewhere?

We didn’t bother with bathing suits, and just slathered sunscreen on any exposed skin before walking the sand in hoodies and pants. The girls clambered on and around the driftwood structures left behind, and chased the huge flocks of seagulls. We jumped in the waves, soaking our clothes, and then stripped the babies down to their birthday suits, little white hineys running and laughing along the shoreline.

I hate leaving the shore, and always stop to breathe deeply before settling my melancholy into the car. When will I get back?

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2 thoughts on “last hurrah

  1. Beautiful photos, and beautifully written. For me, cultivating the sense of home in a different place didn’t work. I moved up to the boreal forest for a few years and although I loved it and loved the people, I eventually had to get back to the prairie. I couldn’t get used to being surrounded by trees when I had grown up on farmland and needed to see the horizon. Strangely, only out on the lake did I ever feel at home…even though I had never been around water. It was the sense of openness and space that I needed and eventually moved home for.

    It’s not possible for everyone to remain “home” and many wouldn’t chose to. I also think not everyone identifies so strongly with a place. In that sense I think they are lucky to be able to live where life takes them and bloom where they are planted.

    My husband is from the eastern-most part of Canada and I know he misses the ocean and rock and forests. I imagine it’s hard for him at times, especially because we don’t make it back there as often as we’d like. I hope it comforts him, and you, to know that your children’s sense of home and place is being cultivated in the happy family memories you are creating, right where you are. Nice post 🙂

    Like

  2. ‘Where your heart is, there your home will be also’

    Never having the privilege of growing up in the same one or two towns, with the same familiar friends and places, I didn’t know ‘home’.

    It wasn’t until I, or rather, my husband found me that I found ‘home’ and what it meant for me. It’s being with the ones I love; each day caring for them and loving them the best I can. We could live in a little box but as long as I have my little family I will be home.

    What can I say, I’m a ‘living on love kind of sucker’ 😀

    *hope you carve it all out and your heart and your head meet halfway

    Like

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