Never a bad day at the beach

August 12, 2011

We’re on vacation with Anna’s family staying in a beautiful home on Perdido Bay, close the the Alabama-Florida border. Having grown up near the water — the English Channel — I have a theory: it’s never a bad time to be at the beach or bay. Every type of weather (except the types that will kill you) finds beautiful expression at the waterfront.

Today I awoke to the distant flashes of lightning and the sound of distant thunder. I took a cup of coffee onto the front porch (this house has an amazing wrap around porch) and planted myself in a rocking chair. As the sun crept higher in the sky its light revealed the sort of billowing clouds you can find only near water. They hung heavy overhead and slowly marched northward up from the gulf. The sun’s increasing light revealed more and more details of the soaring clouds. The thunder is moving closer and closer and in no time we’ll have a downpour.
Storms have their own beauty. We often associate the beach with sunny weather and sunbathing. In my experience there’s just as much beauty and almost as much fun in the gusts of a summer thunderstorm or the stillness of a winter morning with frost covering the ground.
There’s never a bad time to be at the beach. The waterfront always offers it’s consolation — the tranquility of a still or even choppy bay. So we’ll see what today will bring: sun and sailing or rain, puzzles, and conversation over cups of coffee. Either way: we can’t lose.