Beach Days

Wed 18th, Nov, 2009

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The other week I found myself on a beach I don’t usually go to, due to training schedules of one of myrats,  I mean most-gorgeous-kids-ever.

It was not, by any stretch of the imagination a nice evening but seasoned cold-beach-goer I am from my former life in the Old Country I had with me a big toasty old sweater.

It was bracing and beautiful and so I went for a solitary walk along the shoreline while they trained and spent most of it bending down and picking up the most tiny, most perfectly formed delicate little shells…before long I had a pocket full of them.

So tiny that I didn’t really know what I would do with them, but perfect for scattering on a table…more of which I’ll show you tomorrow…


Though I really don’t need to re-iterate on here how much I love our seachange, this walk reminded me very much of what used to be home and how different my kids’ lives will be to the one Mr BC & I had.

When I was a child, going to the beach was an outing, involving a picnic and lots of gear and we would more often than not end up eating sandwiches in the car, watching a dark grey old sea like this, with the rain lashing down outside, the windscreen wipers going and the steam building up…

We always, always had tea.  In a flask or, boiled up with the car door as a windbreaker on one of those little old camping burners and a kettle.  It arrived in thick 70′s orange plastic camping cups and tasted of plastic, and was, shock horror, made by the shortcut method – teabags in the cups – ‘cos we didn’t have a pot.

I always remember that tea was bittersweet…not quite tasting the same without a pot…but tea and a Rich Tea by the ocean, wind howling, and everything a bit damp, would always hit the spot…

Funny how walking along here, a whole world away brought those memories flooding back…and I thought about how nice it would be along here with a flask and a cup of tea.


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21 Responses to “Beach Days”

  1. Oh Sarah, how lovely to sip tea by the sea. Your photos are ethereal. A wonderful post to read before slipping off to sleep….


  2. Ahhh…I remember doing the same thing in Ireland..and always the everpresent Tea in the flask. Good memories.
    I just got back from Ireland and drank loads of tea and brought some of the good stuff home (to Vancouver) with me.
    BTW..the photo of the candles and the shells is so beautiful!!

  3. fairmaiden says:

    I think you will have to revisit that spot…next time with a thermos of hot water and tea bags:O)

  4. m says:

    Since I have always lived on the sunny side of things…your chilly windswept beach outings of the past sound very fascinating to me! (either way tho…I’m sure I would still get really big “ocean air hair”! ;)

    m ^..^

  5. Alison Gibbs says:

    Great photos Sarah and how fabulous that all those memories came flooding back. I think that those of us that live near the beach sometimes take it for granted and our kids that have grown up with it couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. My grown up kids won’t live anywhere but close enough to be at the beach in no longer than 15 minutes in the car.
    We are so lucky. Like you I remember the beach as being a daytrip or a holiday destination. Now I am lucky enough to be 5 minutes by car.

  6. Although I have never lived by the beach, I understand the way that water soothes the soul. I live by a little creek with a big waterfall, in the same spot I grew up in. It makes me grateful that my children have grown up surrounded by the comfort of water, too. It’s a magical source of inspiration, calmness and memories, all tied up in one place.

    Sweet post, Sarah.

  7. Floss says:

    Do you know what? I only started drinking tea last year! A Brit who had to leave Britian before she became ‘normal’… (whatever that may mean). I do miss the sea.

  8. Ruby says:

    thanks for sharing your memories. the photos are beautiful. i love the simplicity of the tiny seashells, tea lights & white table linen. ruby

  9. Alison says:

    Ah such a sweet post. Oh those days by the sea when we were younger!

  10. Lisa B. says:

    A beach is beautiful no matter what the weather!

  11. Lee Marrs says:

    It’s funny how you remember the cold wet times, balanced with the huddles in the car with a warming drink. If it were all fine and dandy these experiences would just pass us by. All part of the good, the bad and the ugly. Give me fine any day – a Queenslander – but they happen here too!
    Great photos. Really sets the scene.

  12. Mary says:

    Living close to the Torquay beaches, we didn’t head there on wet days, but we’d often go up on Dartmoor on Sunday afternoons and of course it would rain! The picnic would go on, though chilly and wet, and yes, the flask of tea was always at the ready…………….yum, Rich Tea biscuits, love those with tea. Do you get them in Oz Sarah? Don’t see them here but can buy Digestive and I love those too.

    I love the quiet of the beaches of North Carolina in the Winter – days are still often brilliant and quite warm, one can walk and shell for hours without seeing more than a few people and their dogs. It’s a 2 hr. drive but well worth it!

    Thanks for the memories.

  13. jane says:

    wow. great post. poignant thoughts that carried me back to belgium and the coast/channel trips. there’s nothing like hot tea (pot or mug) to take the damp away. or make it bearable. with a slab of pound cake it would be perfect for me!! thanks for the memories and the beautiful photos. jkj

  14. jane says:

    p.s. what are the kidlets training for? jkj

  15. Ah…tea by the sea. Sounds like my kind of day. :-) I really love that last photo…so ethereal (there’s a big word for me on limited sleep, lol!).

  16. Jennifer says:

    I so wished we lived closer to the ocean, that’s the one thing I miss living on the prairie. It sounds so wonderful, and I bet a cup of tea would be perfect with it.

  17. Chrissy says:

    Nothing better than tea by the sea….makes my heartache for Ireland!!!

  18. Vale says:

    Hello Sarah! I adYour photos are wonderful….sweet memories of your chilhood!
    A nice evening to you!

  19. Vale says:

    Oppss..I don’t know what happened…I missed some words…I want to say that I adore sea and beach in every Season!!!

  20. Cindy S says:

    You are a wonderful story teller, I love the way you describe your life in Great Britain. I am so glad that you have such a wonderful life now, it is a blessing to live in a place that you enjoy so much. Hugs, Cindy S.

  21. Sarah S-B says:

    I have the perfect book for you to read ‘Why you are Australian – a letter to my children’ more about it over at my blog! :)