Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Something in the Air

Can’t describe myself as doing much of anything today, most of it along the lines of what I imagine as the life of Riley. But don’t misunderstand that to mean sleeping until noon and idling away the remaining hours flipping through movie magazines and munching chocolate bonbons. No, after the usual early morning walk on the beach, I passed a couple of hours reading to my golden girls in the retirement home down the street, then came home to laze way the afternoon marveling at the change of season underway here on the watery edge.

The doors and windows are all open here and autumn breezes are blowing through and unclogging these stale rooms. Surprising how insensitive one becomes to a daily electric climate, dulled and accepting of the ‘perfect’ air-conditioned temperature. Though it seems a little early to me (my first autumn in Florida) I am experiencing a change now that involves much more than mere changing temperatures. Something is in the air. A shift is in progress on every front. The color of the ocean has darkened, the light has gradually become more sympathetic, less intimidating. New birds have come from other climates to winter at the seaside. Ocean water is colder, the beard of seaweed tracing the surf line redder now. I doubt there is ever a time in this setting when the air is anything less than fresh, but at this time of year you notice a clear difference in the air, a difference that enlivens the senses.

In the late afternoon I walked down to the water’s edge with the idea of filling my vision with nothing but ocean and sky, wanting to stand with feet in the surf, seeing a hundred and eighty degrees of only those elements, divided by the razor sharp horizon. But in fact, nothing about it surprised me; colder water, deeper blue ocean, and perfect clarity to the horizon three miles out. Walking back up to the beach stairs, I came upon the lady in sand, an image that made me think of Picasso for some reason. The photo of the stairs? Nothing special, except as a look at the climbing sand bolstered by October tides.


  1. Very evocative. I was standing with you in the cold water at the edge of the beach, scanning the vista of water and sky.

  2. You are a painter with words. Beautiful.

    I'm sitting in Phoenix, AZ with my windows open and feeling much as you. Autumn is a release from the a/c into the natural. My favorite time of year, to be sure.

  3. I can't tell you the number of times I have counted the steps still exposed after a torrential rain has washed sand to the land. I have actually seen these steps when there were only three steps showing. A wonderful article and picture today......one taking me back some years.


About Me

My photo
Oak Hill, Florida, United States
A longtime expat relearning the footwork of life in America