The quintessential gift of retirement is time. In my case, I also can live beautifully wedged between the ocean and a bay. And walk.
Each morning I slip the bonds of sleep reluctantly to walk to the Atlantic Ocean with my dog, catching the perpetual sunrise, unique each day in its angle on the ocean horizon and spectacular in appearance. Sometimes rising with its full round beauty popping up, nearly blindly me until my eyes adjust to the slashes of light bursting forth suddenly. Other mornings it sneaks up through thin layers of clouds, light radiating red and seeping up from the horizon peeking through the clouds with a wash of pinks and reds unfurling and illuming the sagging morning clouds.
The rolling surf gently laps across the sand creating a sense of endless life and naturally intrinsic permanency in the diurnal cycle. The tiny particles swishing, brushing against another random grain of sand, once a mighty boulder now reduced to a home for ocean creatures and a playground for rambunctious summer vacationers. Sun sparkling and dancing on the ever-changing surf warms my inner self with thoughts of the unchanging nature of earth and my awesomely brief time in this unassuming life.
This morning, the air crisp and dry, I hurried to catch the beauty of the sun and beach before the scattered fall visitors stirred and decided to go with an unleashed dog accompanying their walk on the beach.
But, what happened? Man had decided to intervene and bend nature to the will of machines…beach replenishment! Ugly, desecrating the fall landscape with machines, pipes, generators, and caterpillar movers, yet necessary to preserve the resort and ocean front. Man fighting nature…. Barrier islands, not meant to be still but forever turning over, functioning as nature’s dune system parallel to the coast and habitat for marsh life.