I dream of sealess beaches. Blankets of water recede to reveal the rumpled sheets of the sea floor, cool and plush. This place was embedded inside me as a little girl.
The water would recede and we’d walk a mile deep into the bed of the ocean, scurrying back with ten pound buckets of abandoned sea shells and a pocket of sand dollars before the water could creep in and overtake us.
Our collection of little skeletons from our brief adventures to a sealed off underworld.
But we were not afraid.
Sand Dollar Beach is what happens when the sea takes a great big bite out of a crisp cliff cookie, leaving sand dollar crumbs for luck.
For our honeymoon, Big Sur was a cul-de-sac, sealed at the southern end by a landslide. And I remembered the opportunities for adventure that I took for granted as a brave child.
There on that crescent beach, we roamed to the very tippy top. There were only a few others, all lovers. A women in the throes of passion with a novel. A pair gazing into the distance, in side by side conversation and us.
We were so in love then.
We made our way to the water’s edge, turned away by the goosebumps that told us, not today, too cold. Even in July.
Like a couple kids, I showed him the remnants of cartwheels and handstands I proudly crafted as a child. They were worn out and tired, but mostly intact, still just as fun.
The sun was near the horizon, smearing gold on the backs of the incoming waves, casting long cold shadows behind the rocks. Between the gold and shadows we played, feeling like we had the world to ourselves, tightrope walking along the edge of a continent.
The sun sunk further, the sea licking it’s lips, edging closer, getting ready to take another delicious bite. We lazily drifted back to the winding staircase that brought us down into this dreamworld.
We stepped through the field of smooth stones that still hurt with each step, looking for those sand dollars I was promised.
The sun dipped his toe into the cold sea, while we stood mesmerized by the shifting colors, each lasting for a blink and yielding cordially to the next.
The sea and the water and the rocks and the clouds and the cliffside, all cooperating to paint a glorious image in the mind for new dreams.
And I reflected my own sunset in unison.
I knew then, that this was an ending and I can confirm that notion now. That day I longed to leave the bound shore of certainty.
I longed for the sea, for the journey, for the adventure and the uncertainty. For the person I would become if I let myself surrender, seize the brief miraculous opportunities and let the beauty of the world leave an imprint on the sands of my soul.
Trusting and unafraid.
If I was given these gifts, I would surely be given others.
Photo by: Jacki Potorke