Beach Escape…

This afternoon, I finally managed to get down to the beach for a good solid walk, making the most of the glorious Autumn sunshine before Winter sets in, sending the sun packing off to the Northern Hemisphere. Of course,  many of you are actively trying to speed that process up. However, we Aussies are a resilient bunch. Although Daylight Savings Time officially ended this morning, we’re not letting Summer go without a fight. By the way, temperatures reached a high of 27 degrees today. Happy Days! It was actually perfect weather.

DSC_3207

I really needed to get to the beach today. As you might’ve read, I’m fully immersed in researching and writing my collection of biographical short-fiction. These stories are based on the numerous stories I’ve collected researching our family histories, and there’s quite a cast of characters with a vast range of tales to tell. Each story feels like a book in itself as I research the person, location and historical framework and in effect pour all these ingredients into some kind of crucible and then try to pluck out the essence. That’s what I use to write these stories. I’m not simply writing their life stories. At times, this process has almost a mystical feel, like I’m pulling a rabbit out of a hat. That’s despite the stories being meticulously researched. So, my eyes and mind are literally buzzing from loads of alt-tabbing between various sources, which is like having flashing lights flickering in my face. It can’t be good. However, now that I’ve finally found my genre and have two stories down and two on the way, there’s no holding back.

Yet, while 100% immersion and a mono focus sounds great from a writing perspective, I still need to eat, sleep, shower and make sure my kids are taken care of and get where they’re meant to be on time and on the right day. These things are falling by the wayside at the moment, and they’ll soon be directed to the microwave and the freezer and told to “insert here”.

Well, it hasn’t got to that point yet. However, this is why I consciously need to pull myself away. I can’t attach a snorkel and keep writing underwater. I need to take breaks and undertake a variety of activities, while still keeping my eye fixed on the prize.

So, it was really great to finally get back to the beach this afternoon. It was bucketing down much of last week. Then, on the other days, it was either too sunny or I’d miss the boat or I’d simply forget to go. I know that doesn’t sound very motivated, but I’m only human. I can’t juggle ten balls in the air and expect to catch them all…especially when I’ve so focused on the one! Still, I keep asking myself How hard can it be to go for a simple walk, especially when it takes in such breathtakingly beautiful scenery? What kind of idiot am I? Well, my only rationale is that even when you live in Paradise, you still need to deal with the every day.

Beach Invaders

We don’t usually get so much seaweed on our beach. I think the heavy rain last week is probably to blame. 

 

Just for your enjoyment, I lugged my massive Nikon DSLR with zoom lens along the beach and thought you’d particularly like to see some Surf Lifesaving touches. The red inflatable boat is known here as a “rubber ducky” and is used for beach rescues. Not sure if you’re familiar with the red and yellow surf lifesaving flags. These flags mark safe swimming area, which is also patrolled by the lifesavers or lifeguards. The flags are also a key feature of our Summer beaches and you might arrange to meet friends “in-between the flags”. Or, if you’re terribly short-sighted like myself, you leave your glasses and towel under a flag, ensuring you get back there before they shut up shop for the day.

While we’re touching on our local surf-lifesaving culture, we have a junior program called Nippers, where young kids gradually learn the ropes. Like all these activities, there’s a huge dropout rate as the physical demands and competitive aspects take their toll. It also takes a lot of commitment, and that also has a sense of heavy competition. Our lives are full to overflowing most of the time.

Both of our kids did Nippers for a few years, before taking up Sea Scouts and shifting their focus over to still water and in our daughter’s case, onto dance. As I am finding myself, it’s hard to maintain a diverse range of interests when you’re trying to conquer the world. Or, at least a particular field.

So, I’ll leave you with a few pics of the kids doing Nippers from years ago and you can imagine yourself down at the beach bright and early on a Sunday morning with the rest of us.

Best wishes,

Rowena

 

8 thoughts on “Beach Escape…

  1. tidalscribe

    I think some lifesavers come to our beaches when it’s winter in Australia. I love the idea of a collection of stories about your family – sounds like the best way to save tales thar shouldn’t be lost. Hmm you have given me an idea!

  2. maxwellthedog

    The “Nippers” photos alone were worth the price of admission! Loved ’em. As you slide into Fall just remember some of us are just starting Spring planting!

  3. Rowena Post author

    We are really lucky here that the weather only goes off for about 3 months of the year. However, that does make me a bit complacent. Need to get outside more often.
    Are you doing a bit of gardening atm? I managed to start a pumpkin patch out the front when I used compost when I planted two hibiscus plants. It’s going to be an interesting having pumpkins growing randomly out the front but our place is pretty random anyway.
    Best wishes,
    Ro

  4. Rowena Post author

    That’s me to a tee! We have a phrase here “the little Aussie battler”. Gives me something to aspire to.

  5. Rowena Post author

    I’m fairly sure you’re right about our lifesavers going overseas during our Winter. We’re great travellers.
    Most of the family stories I’ll be writing actually come from my newspaper research, although there will be a few including from my grandparents. The historic Australian newspaper were put online and I’ve found the most incredible things about even close family members we knew nothing about. Geoff’s grandfather’s first cousin was a world champion cycling who raced as Newark USA for many years and even though his brothe cycled and they’d go and watch the annual local race, they had no idea. The stories have a blend of fiction and non-fiction and I’m going to have a code to distinguish the two. It’s really coming along well.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

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