"for whatever we lose, like a you or a me, it's always ourselves we find in the sea." -e.e.cummings
I spent a lot of time at the beach in October. Oh how my soul longs to live by the sea. Destin, Florida is a home away from home. My family has retreated to the same place for over a decade. We know the staff, year-round residents, and even the couple that puts out the chairs and umbrellas. I love traveling to new places, but nothing beats going to where you know you belong.
My favorite thing to do in the world is to go for a long run and then sit with a book on the beach to watch the sunset. One afternoon in my last trip I was reading by the ocean and I started to wonder what made the sea so special to me. I paused to stare at the ocean and it hit me: simplicity. It is that it is constant. It's so comforting to know that no matter how many things change within a year, I sit in front of that massive body of water, and everything seems to be well with the world.
On this particular day, something unique happened after I'd been sitting there awhile. Scott, a surfer, called out to me and said "ashley, look!" I looked up where he was pointing and saw something extraordinary: a double rainbow. On both sides of the sun was a rainbow. It baffled me because it hadn't even rained at all. He said that it was a very rare sight. It was one of the most beautiful things I'd ever seen. It was a perfect example of serendipity. I went to the sea expecting yet another lovely sunset, but I went away with something more.
When I go down by the sandy shore
I can think of nothing I want more
Than to live by the booming blue sea
As the seagulls flutter round about me
I can run about when the tide is out
With the wind and the sand and the sea all about
And the seagulls are swirling and diving for fish.
Oh – to live by the sea is my only wish.
-Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy