I’ve been going for a run on the beach almost every other day for the past few years here in Venice. Today was one of the top five beach days I’ve had here in terms of weather, stillness of the ocean, and notably obvious synchronicities.
I have to set the stage. Remember this is November at 10am. The sun was out and it was warm with subdued light and it’s actually supposed to rain. I was wearing only swim trunks and I was comfortable if not warm. The beach was freshly graded meaning there are no footprints or trash on the fluffy part and it’s really neat to walk on. The water was gently lapping the sand. It’s usually a washing machine out there. I only saw a few people and everyone was unusually smiley. The air was still with a slight breeze. Just perfect.
I get a sharp sentimental pang. I’m moving away from this? It may be a long time before I have another opportunity to play near the ocean everyday I if want.
I remind myself to shake it off, because moving to the ranch in Northern AZ is a no brainer. I can hardly sleep from the excitement of it.
Ok, back to the moment. I walk past the lifeguard tower and onto the harder packed wet sand to begin my run. I take a few steps toward the pier and a mini wave rushes up the beach and deposits a tumbleweed directly in my path. Of all the times I’ve been out there I have never ever noticed a tumbleweed.
I look around to see if anybody else is seeing this and go up to inspect it and sure enough it’s a tumbleweed. I just start laughing.
Tumbleweeds abound at the ranch. Digging up tumbleweeds and burning them will be one of my major chores out there.
It was as if the ocean was saying, “You are going to leave all this for tumbleweeds?”
I go on my run. The ocean and the ocean birds and other critters are putting on their best show. I'm amazed at how little trash there is. They dont grade where the ocean meets the sand. There has been an upsetting amount of trash on the beach lately due to the extreme high and low tides of the season. I reach the breakwater where I usually stop and touch a certain rock with my foot to say that I made it and catch my breath. As I turn around a much older and very voluptuous woman is fast paced walking towards me. She has her exercise jacket pulled up above her breasts to cool off exposing large swinging bosoms and a wiggly belly. The undershirt she is wearing is the color of her skin and completely see through. I will leave it to your imagination as to what my first thought might have been. The little voice in my head said, “Mother”. I am thinking of the archetypal mother—Not necessarily my mother, but mother in the general sense. I started to run past her and back towards the pier analyzing and wondering about my experiences with the tumbleweed, the Mother, and my connection with the ocean.
As I get about half way I notice that the waves are getting bigger as the tide is coming in giving the ocean the endlessly chaotic vibe that I’m used to. Just like that! A big wave pops up out of nowhere and rushes up the leg of my trunks depositing a pristine white baby bottle full of milk directly at my feet. I see what’s going on. I stop to acknowledge the ocean and offer my gratitude and thanks for her protection while Jana and I have been living and playing here at her beach.
From where I am stopped gazing out to the horizon I see another sight I had yet to see on this stretch of the beach. Out on the water and really close are dozens of California Sea lions porpoising and frolicking in the water. It looked really playful as if they were doing it for the shear joy of it all. Most likely, considering the amount of sea birds around them they were probably hunting fish, but it was still quite a timeless and beautiful performance to behold. Every single time I have gone out to the ocean it has been dynamic and awe inspiring in some way, and on days like today—a learning experience. Thank you Mother Ocean.
|Structure fire for AZ DECOM 2010 at the ranch. |
The effigy was filled with tumbleweeds.
Notice the huge pile of tumbleweeds on the right.