I said ‘Goodnight’ to the calmest sea imaginable last night. It was like she was a sleeping baby snuggled up in light blue and pink.
What I woke to this morning was a different sort of child ~ dark and moody but with a glint of hope in her eyes.
I made for Newtown Cove doubting that a swim would be possible because of the rising tide and choppy waves.
What greeted me was a packed car park and when I looked down I saw that there were lots of people swimming in the sheltered inlet.
Some of the better swimmers were diving in towards the open sea:
Seeing the swimmers was one thing but joining them was quite another. The sense of togetherness was palpable. Friends, acquaintances, strangers … it didn’t matter. Everyone was chatting to everyone. This was a moment of communal love and respect for both the sea and those who crave it.
All the talk was about how warm the water still is; how a swim sets you up for the day; how Ireland should beat Italy in the Rugby World Cup …
See, it’s not all about appearances. It’s about embracing and enjoying nature and connecting with kindred spirits in the process.
I was out at Garrarus Beach very early this morning to catch up on my birthday swim which was impossible yesterday because of the storm. There was a lovely sense of calm and cleansing and the seaweed was beautifully autumnal and shapely. All day since, I’ve been thinking of this poem:
It’s been a week of blissful sunsets here in Co. Waterford. Yesterday evening Garrarus Beach was surreal. As I ran into the calm sea, there was an deep sense of being at one with those powerful elements of nature ~ fire and water. The colours had me thinking of the sea in very feminine terms, clad in fine blue denim and a translucent pink blouse that only nature could produce.
We were three, a photographer, a fisherman and me ~ all appreciating the wonder that was ours through separate but shared eyes.
As I was departing to return to reality, I asked the photographer, who transpired to be a man whose work I have long admired, if he would send me a copy of what he had captured. So, this is the image that Damien Jackson kindly sent: