Yesterday was the last day of winter. There was a bite to the air as if winter was giving a final reminder of the last few months and my feet were cold as i jogged to the beach, trying to beat the southerlies that were predicted to kick in.
As I came over the dunes, there was just the one solitary surfer in the water and I relished having the northern bank to myself. It was cold, slightly overcast and, to my mind, the perfect end to winter. I paddled into a few and was smiling to myself when I noticed the other surfer paddling toward me. You silently caught a wave and I felt my shackles rising. This was my break. Were you just going to come over now and snake me when there were waves going begging all up and down the beach?
As you paddled back out, you smiled at me. “Isn’t it a wonderful day?!”
“Yeah, it’s perfect.” And i found myself smiling back.
Over the next couple of hours we traded wave for wave and I learnt so much. I learnt not to judge. You wanted to share your happiness and gratitude for the day with me and, if I had have let myself, I would have missed that. I learnt about your life, and shared mine. I learnt that we had more in common than I would have expected and that sometimes it’s easier to see differences than similarities. I learnt to be grateful for the things I took for granted, like having a bank to myself, and I remembered what it was that draws me to this place and to this thing that we love.
I didn’t catch your name, but that last surf of winter was perfect and it wasn’t the waves, it was the company of a stranger. Thanks.
Image: Linda Keam/Bohemian Sea