This is where we start, each week. At 61st and Oceanfront. Sometimes one of us arrives before the other and waits by the water, but lately we've been pulling in one right after the other and parking and walking down together. One week she brings the coffee, one week I do.
Usually we walk a good distance and then stop and sit on the sand a bit before walking some more. The day I took these pictures, I had a migraine and I'd texted to ask if we could sit instead of walk. So we brought our chairs. It's all good.
Most often, we have the wide expanse of sand all to ourselves. Can you believe that? We'll see three, maybe five people the whole time we're there. We generally see more dogs. The dogs always come up to say hello to me.
Each week is different. Some days the water is gray and white-tipped, the waves choppy. Other days it's serene and glassy blue.
Always there are dolphin. Always. This last time, when the water was still and the air so clear that the horizon stretched for miles further than we normally seem to see, there was a never ending train of dolphin trailing in front of us. Tail-slapping, leaping, slowly curling their way up and down the coastline. You get so you expect to see them, and still, it's a surprise and a delight.
To be honest, as much as I love the walking, my favorite is when we sit. The ocean changes so much in our short time on the sand. Crabs scuttle nearby and the tide creeps ever closer. The waves are constantly changing, sometimes a gentle "bloop" onto the sand and sometimes, suddenly, huge and crashing. You don't notice this as much when you walk alongside. It's a different union with the water and the shore when you're moving.
And when we go, I hate to leave. Even knowing we'll be back, I hate to leave. We never run out of things to chat about; the stories of our work, and our families, and our kids (especially our kids) change from week to week.
There's a metaphor in there, I'm sure.