There are other people on the beach – walking, playing, fishing – but the atmosphere of the wide open space of the beach allows me to ignore them without being impolite. Everyone is doing their own thing so there is no unspoken expectation to engage with them. I like that. I like being able to find some solitude out in public.
I think it’s the gentle rhythmic rise and fall of the waves that I find so captivating. And the peace.
The protected beaches of north Queensland, with islands and reefs taming the ocean – like the swaying coconut palms overhanging the shore, the waves mimic the peaceful tropical pace. Roll in, disperse, roll out. Repeat. No thundering surf. Just toddler-sized waves, gently turning over shells and coral debris, spreading out onto the beach, soaking into the sand, with the remaining trickle of water returning to the sea. No push and shove. No unrelenting brashness. Just a slow hypnotic chorus. A calmness that permeates my depths.
I cross my legs, wriggle my backside into a comfortable depression in the sand, and let the beauty and tranquillity of nature nurture me. And I am grateful.