Like any other Monday, it was our day to go to the gym. After getting all of my usual stuff done here around the house, we headed out. The day was already beautiful by then, with the sun warm and the usual morning haziness nearly gone. We decided to put the top down on the car, and enjoy the morning air.
We drove past the mill down the street from us, and it was good to see it looking ‘healthy’ again. Last spring, during a storm, the old dam just gave way and crumbled under the weight of the rushing river. Since then, the river has been shallow and nearly dry, with the water never really rising above a couple of feet lest there was a significant amount of rain. This left the river bed looking shabby, as the dead trees and debris were left exposed. It looked more like a dumping ground than a river, and even though the debris was all natural, it wasn’t pretty.
A month or so we began to see activity at the old mill. This made my heart happy, as it seemed that they were finally ready to begin repairs on the dam. Although the mill was a ‘historic site’ it was mostly abandoned. We would walk by it nearly every day on our winter walks and I would think how if I won the lottery or anything like that, I would like to turn it into a working mill again, but restored how it once had been. There was room on the property to build a shop, and it was fun to fantasize how we could do our scroll sawing from there, and perhaps have a little shop besides. Maybe even have a small cafe to serve coffee and biscuits – something that would encourage tourists to stop by and also preserve the area.
Oh how our minds can wander!
Seeing the progression of the repairs was exciting. Each time we passed, it seemed that it was closer to being done. After taking over a year to begin, we were wondering if they were even going to bother to fix it at all, and just eventually allow the mill to decay as they have done with so many others in the area.
But they worked quickly and the dam is finished and the river again is full. It makes a huge difference on the landscape of our little road, and it is no longer an eyesore. I will have to post a picture tomorrow.
So on we drove to the gym. Usually as we passed over the hill, the air would be noticeably cooler. Even on the warmest days the ocean seemed to hold the temperatures at bay. But today was different. It was still warm as we drove along the sea, and I began to plan.
We did our usual workouts and stopped at the store for a few groceries. As we were putting the packages in the car, Keith mentioned something to me about heading to Yarmouth. “I can’t” I said to him.
“Why not?” he asked.
“Because the beach is calling to me.” I replied.
He looked at me as if I was crazy. But he knows me better. I then saw the look of dread on his face, as if he thought I would ask him to go with.
Keith doesn’t share my love of the beach. He likes it alright, but he says he doesn’t enjoy ‘sitting there and doing nothing.’ I suppose growing up near the ocean, he doesn’t see it in the special way that I do. And that is OK.
The last thing that I want to do is to go there with someone that doesn’t want to be there. We have all done that before, be it with our children or someone else. Having someone with who is only thinking of how long until we leave takes all of the fun out of it. And I didn’t want that.
I am totally fine with Keith for not liking the beach. There are things he does that I don’t like to do either. I don’t begrudge him doing them without me and he does not begrudge my beach time either. It is a good chance for us to do some things on our own and considering the amount of time we spend together, it is very positive for both of us. It gives us some of that “me time” that we all need.
So I packed up my few things and I headed out. I took a pad of sketching paper and several pencils and a sharpener and I planned on doing some work. I don’t know if I could have torn myself away but for the fact that I was in the drawing part of my work cycle. While I have come to doing most of my drawing on the computer, I thought it would be nice to try drawing the old fashioned way – with a pencil and paper – and see if I still knew how.
I arrived there around 1pm. I only knew this from the clock in the car. I don’t wear a watch and I refuse to have a cell phone. I will hold out as long as I can on that one. When I am away, I want to be completely away. If something were to happen, I would certainly find out soon enough.
I spent the afternoon drawing and completed the layouts for three new projects. It was warm and peaceful and in between drawing, I observed people and families and children flying kites and I just relaxed. In the group over to the side of me, I could hear a woman talking to the rest of the group saying how way on the other end of the beach, there were rocks and caves that were beautiful. She said she took many pictures and it was worth seeing. While I wanted to venture over there, I didn’t want to leave my stuff for that long, as the tide was out and the beach is very flat so it was massive. The caves she spoke of were quite a distance away.
I will plan to see them next time though, and not have so much equipment with me. Perhaps Keith will come with to explore them as he does enjoy that and it isn’t ‘just sitting.’ We shall see.
Besides drawing, I did have a book with me and did some reading. I haven’t read for pleasure in years, and Keith’s mom had lent me several nice books that would be quick to read without too much thinking.
It was a perfect day. I once again thought how fortunate I am to have such a good life. Not only did I accomplish some things, but I had some quiet time too. Time to contemplate and time to relax.
Sometimes things just ‘happen’. When I got up in the morning, I had no idea that I would have a trip to the beach. But last year, I only visited a total of one time, even though it is only a few minutes drive from my place. Somehow that seemed wrong. And here it is almost August and again, I have only been there one time.
As I was loading my groceries into the car in the parking lot of the store, a phrase came to mind:
In this crazy life we all live, we need to take things as they come – even if they aren’t on our schedules. For we never know what tomorrow will bring, and if we will have the opportunity again.
I am glad I made the decision to go to the beach. Not only did I get some quality work done, but I also had some time for myself to relax and regroup. I believe in the saying “if you don’t take care of yourself, you won’t be good to anyone else.” We need these times to feed our souls so that we are able to be the best we can be.
I plan to make go more often.
Have a wonderful Tuesday.
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"