Walked down to the beach
she fell asleep, then I did
not sure for how long
She had just finished exams. I’d just had another week at the office of a nowhere job that just barely telegraphed the semblance of professional career. (What I remember most is my boss telling me that I had to keep a photo of his dog on my desk.)
We decided to go away for the weekend. A no-frills trip up the coast, because we didn’t really have any money to spare, beyond paying rent and the usual monthly expenses. We booked a room at a cheap motel and the rest of the itinerary followed along these lines — a couple of bottles of cheap red wine from a supermarket, lunch from a deli, dinner at a diner. In other words: perfect.
Did I even pack a bag for this trip? Even if I did, I surely wore the same clothes the entire time. I have no memory of anything we did or talked about. I’m not even sure I would remember the trip at all if it wasn’t for this:
We walked down to the beach as soon as we arrived. It wasn’t summertime swimming-in-the-ocean weather, but it was a beautiful day, and people were all about, soaking up the sun. We didn’t bring beach towels. Just found a spacious spot for two and sat down. Eventually, we laid down. She fell asleep. And then I did. We stayed that way for quite some time.
I don’t know for how long. That’s the beauty of it. It’s so rare to be enveloped in that kind of comforting mystery.
The sun going down woke us up. At first I had no idea where I was. But I did feel a distinct warmth, one that made me feel truly rested, and safe, and right where I was supposed to be. Where we were supposed to be. The beach had emptied out. We sat up and let the evening’s quiet be our guide, not to mention the resonance of finding a respite from the relentlessness of what’s next. We were there, the waves were crashing, and the sun was setting on a clear blue sky. We watched it together. The hues of the lingering light are as pure in mind now as they were all those years ago.
Fell asleep on beach
setting sun awakened us
hues stream the sweet dreams