My beach is not the mile long swathe of powdery white sand you might find on a remote Caribbean island.
Mine is a working beach. A beach close to town. In Massachusetts or Rhode Island.
My beach has drizzling waves. That slurp along the shore. With tangles of black seaweed strewn about.
Bobbing boats offshore. Waiting to be put to use.
A rusty red one, is pulled up on the sand. Probably for fishing. Metal lure box. Green camo jacket and assorted boat things strewn on the bottom.
I see a young mother squatting on the shoreline digging a hole with two towheaded toddlers. They’re scooting about. Gathering buckets of water to put in the hole. Measuring cups and kitchen spoons nearby for the finish work.
An austere looking woman with a beaked hat sits at the back of the beach in a camping chair and book bag at her feet. Wedged into the sand so it doesn’t tip over. She is reading something I can’t quite make out.
A young couple walks in front of me. Friends. She has a nylon backpack. They’re laughing and push each other towards the water.
Up in front of me a young woman in a billowy blue dress stands at the waters edge letting her feet sink in the sand. I don’t see her shoes anywhere.
This is the kind of beach that becomes part of everyday routines. Not the kind of beach you drive to. It’s the kind of beach you stop by. You don’t have to get ready for it.
You build things. Watch things. Experience things.
You don’t need a fancy bathing suit. Or an oversized striped beach towel.
Or a cooler.
It’s the kind of beach where you feel like you belong.
Because you do.
On this beach, you’re a local.