Hello Old Friend
“We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch – we are going back from whence we came.” ~ John F. Kennedy
Finally Back Where I Belong!
Framily I have never been so happy. I honestly felt like the girl in the Pacifier when she gets out of the car Vin Diesel is driving, and kisses the ground. Except, I wanted to do that because I was at the beach. After three months, I was finally back at my happy place. I KNOW it sounds like first world problems, but the beach is my soul. Without it, I was withering and dying, and basically like Sebastian from The Little Mermaid, extremely cranky without my salt air and waves.
I know, I know, I sound like a broken record, but the beach is my sanity. It is my therapy and my happy place and where I can go to breathe, and relax, and find my center again. I joke about being a mermaid, but I literally feel like half of myself is made up of salt water and sand. The moment my feet touched the sandy ground I felt like I was being greeted by an old friend. I felt a peace that I haven’t felt in a long time. If I was truly honest, I hadn’t felt that way even before the pandemic began.
I grew up in the mountains, and since I was quarantining with my family, it was where I was stuck, unfortunately. Don’t get me wrong, my hometown is filled with lots of beauty and an abundance of nature. It is the place people go to breathe fresh air and hike some mountains, see gorgeous waterfalls, and enjoy some lake time. Unlike down south, you don’t have to worry about snakes or gators in the water. It is crystal clear and completely safe to swim in. I definitely did my fair share of hiking and as it got warmer I even explored some of the rivers.
While I discovered a new found appreciation for my hometown, it was NOT the same. If this pandemic has taught me anything, (and I feel like it has taught me a LOT!) it is that me and being landlocked do not mix. We are like oil and water. I need the wide open coast. I need to be able to be on a beach (a real beach) or the millennia old rocks and gaze out at the horizon, with nothing but the sea dancing about. To feel little, but mighty. To feel my spirit soar like the seagulls above me.
Maine had actually opened their beaches and state parks in May, with social distancing guidelines put in place. Unfortunately despite living fifteen minutes from the state border, (and having a lower number of COVID cases then even they did, and they don’t have many) New Hampshire residents were not allowed in, which, while understandable, still sucked. A lot. For me. Especially since we were all quarantining together, and this introvert needed some space from time to time. I am sure many people can relate.
When Maine made the announcement right before my birthday that they had opened the beaches to New Hampshire residents (we are one of two states not required to take a COVID test to go there, as well as don’t have to be quarantine for two weeks. Woot!), I, of course, jumped at the first chance I could to go and it was absolute bliss!
It was also a little eery. My first trip I took, I visited what is usually one of the busiest beaches in the state, since the State Park I go to was still closed, yet social distancing was not an issue. No one was there! Those of us who were, were spaced out WAY more then the designated six feet. I haven’t been back to that beach since, but my usual beach has been the same way. Masks are required in the bathrooms and on the walk ways, but social distancing hasn’t been an issue and I feel safe and content in my happy place.
Back being a mermaid
Since the beaches have reopened, (and I began this post back in June, oops!) I have been going as much as I can. It isn’t all lazying around soaking up the sun, I have brought work with me and am back to shooting ALL the content I can. Especially all the summer and swimwear I can. Somehow shooting bikini pics in my parents backyard, even with the faux beach I created, is not really the aesthetic I am going for. I know hard to believe! Even with it being my new work from home, it has been a much needed haven.
I don’t want to be a downer, but July has not been an easy month (really wishing 2020 would give my family a bone or ten! Also, if you could send some prayers our way it would be greatly appreciated, and I would be forever grateful.) so to be able to escape to the beach has been more then a necessity, but my salvation to get through the difficult moments. While I love the city, (and Charleston I truly believe is the best of both those worlds) my heart is firmly submerged beneath the ocean and whenever all of this craziness lifts, that is where I will be settling down. After all a mermaid can’t be landlocked forever.
Have been able to go to the beach? What is something you are craving to do, but can’t because of the pandemic?