Sea Series. Day 4

Sadly day 4 means the last full day in my midweek trip.  But I was excited to witness another colourful sunrise and after uhming and ahing decided to run carrying my phone. I saw all sorts of quirks of this small town that I wanted to immortalize in image form instead of just in my busy brain. 

The street in the tourist side is really just one layer of apartments or houses deep and the sand dune is very high and steep. I was amazed by some of the construction work going on as well as the retainer walls of yesteryear.  The weather was mild and the tourists were gone due to the one day public holiday being spent. There were some friendly runners full of greetings and it’s easy to feel cheerful while running along a beautiful beach. 

One of my loves for social media is the connection of things. A friend who I had only met once in the Drakensberg  years ago, lives locally and she took me to some hidden gems in the area for coffee and a catch up. I love it when brunch plans have the capacity to become evening meals because the conversation isn’t done. Although we returned before sunset,  it is a nice feeling knowing that social media helped germinate a new friendship. 

Sadly my suitcase is almost packed and my belongings were reluctant to climb back in knowing that some cold weather awaits inland.  In the beginning of the year I was determined to cut my overhead expenses and my timeshare fees were on that list. But, I am truly pleased that I didn’t because although my timeshare points are now finished, it’s been an exciting 6 months spending 2 years of unused points in an efficient manner. 

But now, how to fill the next 6 months?

Sea Series. Day 3

My second morning had me leap out of bed quickly. Although it’s night 3, it’s only the second sea sunrise I get to see. I was convinced I saw more dolphins and they were hanging around (or leaping?) in one spot, so I grabbed my shoes and dashed downstairs.  The doors were closed due to the earlyness and I walked reluctantly away.  I got a notion to try the door at the lift and it allowed me access to the fresh morning.

Sunrises are very quick in South Africa,  well let’s say the pink colours are quick so I knew that I had to move quickly around the corner to try get a clear picture of the dolphins, which turned out to be fishermen on small boats. Argh! But I decided to keep walking as the street was alive with people which was due to the ( forgotten) public holiday.  I was amazed at how many fishermen there were.  Plus the tide was high so lots of the men were casting off from the pavement.  Families sat patiently in the cars, youngsters in their onesies which made me think about home and the Jozi frost. 

I walked along to the older cottages that I had seen the day before and I decided to go live  for my Facebook skit, with them as a backdrop as well as the size of the plant- covered dunes looming over the small homes.

I’m always curious as to how people live, and how different it must be in amongst all the modern holiday apartments. Three vocal dogs were wishing the fishermen a good catch as I made my way back to get ready for my run.

The foot traffic was far busier as families spilled from their beds onto the pavement and I decided to turn up the one street that didn’t have a ‘dead-end’ sign. You know that dune I mentioned earlier? Well it forced me to stop halfway up the road and catch my breath. I saw a family of fellow Joziburgers admiring a magnificent tree and we all lamented on how we don’t see this beauty every day.

The cars and people were at least 3 times as many as day 2 so I opted to go for lunch early to beat the rush. I had the most delicious tuna salad although I had to pick out a generous amount of tongue tingling avocado. The staff seem genuinely happy to serve down here albeit not with the inland haste, so I sat quietly and eavesdropped on the youngsters beside me,  and their hangover reports.

I managed to so some work, and walked along to the tidal pool which was busy. The narrow street parked to the max, I dread to think about life here in the Summer months with Christmas holidays. I sat on a bench for a while conscious of my mask and long sleeved top. I certainly won’t be returning with any trace of a tan, but I will have a glint in my eye. 

Sea series. Day 2

Waking up in a different bed with different light made me immediately focus on where I was.  I saw some grey clouds on the horizon and I knew that the sunrise would be impressive with the cloudy contrast. I wasn’t wrong.

Every Tuesday, I do a running podcast and I got myself ready for that while loving the milder temperatures than back home. Just after the podcast ended I saw dolphins skim the sea surface so I excitedly rushed out to the balcony to catch the beauties on my phone camera.  Fortunately they were playing for me and surfed some waves and did some impressive leaps and even more impressive is that I actually caught the shot mid-jump.

Wearing my running gear and a huge grin I made my way down to run along the 6km stretch beside the sea. There were a few fellow runners as well as dog and baby walkers.  I passed an incident where someone needed medical assistance on a boat moored on the sand. It pricked my interest as I saw the medics arrive and a few minutes later the medical chopper flew over but wasn’t needed. On my gently sloping return run, I saw locals loading their kayaks on their car roof, holiday makers sitting at pavement cafes, and a general relaxed feel on the street.  I ran past some of the original fishermen houses standing solidly in the midst of all the high rise holiday apartments and wondered about their history.

I took myself for a smoothie at the cafe and could feel my grin on the inside sending all sorts of good serotonin to all my cells. As I was taking pictures of coastal spider webs I saw more dolphins crack the sea surface.  Absolutely loving life in the moment I blurted out while pointing to them. The confirmation of awws from fellow cafe customers made me feel less crazy for my childlike wonder.

On my return to my apartment I decided to put my feet in the Indian Ocean.  But it meant taking my running shoes off. Yikes. I have incredibly ticklish feet and as my soles kissed the sand, my knee buckled.  I think it was from the shock, lol. The water didn’t feel too cold, but I didn’t give it a real chance because I was a chicken.  I then considered crossing the road on recently salted barefeet.  But as my sensitives touched the pavement I realized that I would have to go ‘commando’ in my shoes.  My running socks are like gloves and I certainly wasn’t going to be wiping off all the remarkably sticky sand to try squeeze the damn socks on.

Lunch was interesting to this ‘binnelander’ ( inland dweller). Inland we have hadedas and very few monkeys, here they are very, very brave and the maitre ‘d spent a lot of time chasing the unwelcome customers with a spray bottle of vinegar.  Although they are very cute, they’re still wild animals so I try respect their space and don’t want to share my plate of chips!

And to prove a point they’ve literally walked along my balcony, and I am five stories up!

Sea series. Day 1

‘I wish I had the confidence to go on holiday alone..’
I blinked slowly at my friend going over her utterance slowly in my mind .  Do I truly have confidence?
When did this happen, I wondered.  It feels like I have always had it but it’s only in the last few years that I can genuinely say that my chronic anxiety is gone and I am no longer riddled with fear.

I’m really enjoying my own time and choices. I have spent a lot of time alone in my life of unusual jobs and child free adulthood but I am really beginning to understand what I enjoy and will make the effort to do. Before it was a matter of what other people want, waiting for family to join or decide or what running races offered our ladies group.

The longer I live the more I appreciate my life.
I love the sea, although I seldom swim in it. I love music and right now I’m being delighted by a talented busker during my wait for my timeshare to open.
I love buildings, mountains, desert, and yes, I do love people.  But holidaying on my own means doing my things without putting the needs of anyone else before mine. It’s a strange feeling but once felt, it becomes a stronger need.

Today is day number 1 of writing by the sea.
Exploring a town, never explored.  Feeling the light and energy of a new place and settling in for a midweek trip. 
Often on solo trips I start off overexcited at what to do first.  This enforced pause at the airport, eating my musical lunch is giving me a chance to settle.  To be in my now. 

Airplanes really excite me. My  5 year old self kicks in at all the ‘new’. The idea that in less than an hour,  everything changes, weather, vegetation, birds, air, people and pace. My mind still boggles with that buzz

So I decided to get a ‘writing log’ of this quick trip to the sea. Too long for a Facebook status but I do like to share.

My accommodation is a timeshare studio apartment right across from the sea. That was one of my requirements. I have a partial view but I can hear the waves and am quite sheltered from the wind. I explored the immediate area and bought some groceries from the little spar. One thing I seldom do is go out to dinner alone unless there is a restaurant in the resort.  I usually have a decent lunch and a light supper and that’s what I did today. 

My apartment is fresh and bright and is fully equipped. In fact I could settle in here permanently lol. The east coast seems to get dark early in the winter so I settled down with some coffee and listened to the waves on my patio.