Currently I reside is Swansea university, in my first year of study, and thus the beach is literally a five minute walk away from my bed. This means that it’s quiet easy to go down onto the sand just for a stroll, or to clear my head, which is always nice.
Personally, I’m very fond of this beach. It’s long and wide and the sand is mostly golden, although it can turn into a thick grey mud unexpectedly, and it’s peaceful. Sure, this is Wales and thus it is raining most of the time, and sure, my boots always end up covered in sand at the end of any visit. But when one is walking home late, the sun setting before them, the water shines red and pink where it wets the sand, and it’s beautiful.
Of course, if you’ve ever seen the beach you’ll know that the tide can stay very far out for hours at a time, and the water left behind is just left overs stuck between the ripples that remain. I have only once seen the waves up close to the main beach, and that was travelling home on a bus, when I was too tired to go down and look. So this saturday, while the sun was shining for once, I decided to go down and have a little paddle in those waves, no matter how long it may take to reach them.
Now this, this was not as easy as you’d maybe imagine. With it being a nice day, I decided to go bare foot to the waves, which was lucky really. Of course, the beach is forever littered with millions of small shells in various stages of being broken up and ground into sand, and so it could occasionally get painful. Soft gold sand gave away into hard shells, which in turn quickly gave away into hard sandy ripples in which water shone. Looking out, these ripples seemed to continue for a long way, before giving away to another sand bar then the sea. So I walked, straight out, figuring that I’d be at the sea in no time!
Half way out, I found myself shin deep in grey mud.
Deciding by this point that this really, seriously, was not a pleasant feeling, I decided to back track and wash my feet off in one of the small streams that seemed to end up flowing down the beach. I knew that if it wasn’t for my barefooted-ness I would have lost my beloved boots. So I knew then that this wasn’t going to be as easy as I’d first thought.
But then I figured something out; maybe I’m approaching this from the wrong direction? Maybe I need to actually think about this for a moment. (A rare occurance, lemme tell you. I know I’m not the sharpest knife in the draw and I don’t pretend otherwise.) The steam I’d washed my feet in was very small, but further down the beach there was a large concrete pipe that carried a much larger steam all the way out to the edge of that sand bar. And, thankfully, the bed of this stream was mosty sand and solid enough to walk over.
So again, out I walked. This time I managed to get all the way to that sand bar, and after carefully treading across a shallow little river that cut across my path, scaring a few guppies into swimming away, I was on golden sand again. Now, finally, I felt like I was on a proper beach, able to walk out to that water’s edge and feel the waves lapping at my ankles.
It had taken roughly an hour to get there, after that first mistake and finding a new path, but I’d made it to my goal. Even though it was such a small, silly goal, it felt good. It wasn’t the face that I could feel the cool sea now, could look over the ocean directly from it’s shallows. It was the fact that I had set out to do something, and had succeeded. That, ladies and gentlemen and everyone in between, is a nice feeling.
After that is seemed easy to walk back to the beach proper and rest a while until my feet had dried. I know it’s silly, and all in all this is probably a boring little story for most people, but I think that it was a nice day, one worth remembering. Because in the end the good days are worth the most, and for that day, I was happy.