I'm from St. Louis Missouri. SMACK DAB in the middle of the continental US. That is, literally, thousands of miles away from any beach (except for the man-made, shipped in sand "beaches" made from flooding a valley.)
Now, sitting here in Brisbane, Queensland, I am within five miles of the OCEAN! And, somehow, deep in my psyche, I FEEL like I am hanging on to the edge of the continent, blowing in the breeze of the oceanic wind.
It is a good feeling, a tethered feeling, a freeing feeling.
I have never, in my life, lived this close to major water, and certainly not continent-edge water! I love being able to drive five minutes to see water. Ten minutes and I'm on the lovely shores of Moreton Bay, breeze blowing away anything in my mind... Sitting on the side of the bay, watching the tide role away is, truly, the most centering thing I have ever done.
Bar none. I had no idea I would love it so much.
The kayaks and catamarans move speedily across the horizon, paddles moving in unison. Small white fish leap a foot out of the water and into the head wind. Clouds rush overhead. Seagulls glide by, close enough to see their wing tips. The blues and greens of the waters merge and separate, reflecting the color of the sky. Colors too vivid to believe. White-tipped waves move toward shore, appearing and disappearing in seconds. Sounds carry across the water. Mud flats stretch out before me with walkers, bathers, fishers, boaters, people of all ilk standing in knee deep waters for hundreds of yards off of the sea wall. Coastal villages worth exploring. Mild temperatures that are balmy and cooling at the same time. And the sea breeze heals hearts and minds.
I truly love it.