6 Jan

We all have one place where we can go to soothe our minds, to cast our worries aside or to make us smile. Where is yours? Some friends would say a beach in Fiji, a mountain in New Zealand, or even their bed, but mind is my beach.

Sitting on the last remaining unspoilt part of the Algarve, my beach is white and sandy, and has a fierce breeze perfect for water sports. It’s warm early in the year before the crowds descend, and its desolation provides a perfect thinking spot for all my dreams and hopes to nestle together, like lost socks and the lid of your perfume, only to be found at a later date when you are least expecting it.

My praia has an interesting collection of anchors stuck into the sand where you enter, like centurions guarding my mind and forbidding stray walkers to enter. The jagged rocks tumble down to the sand, and the waters throw themselves at the shore like sullen teenagers, preferring to do anything other than embark on the land. The picturesque lighthouses offer a warning to boaters; the rocks are sharp and offer no respite to swimmers. But once down on the sand, I am at home. Sometimes I can muster the courage to take my shoes off and walk along the water line, but the majority of the time the water is icy, like unexpected snow. Sometimes i find the energy to do cartwheels and hand stands, and sometimes, if I choose an early date to visit, the wind is too piercing to remove my jumper, let alone bathe in my bikini.

When it rains, the beach takes on a far more tumulus nature, feeling stormy and unsettled. Boats dare not come too close to the coast as the waves dance and entice them further and the clouds are purple bruises along the skyline, waiting for a fight.

So if you’re wondering what takes me back here year after year, the answer is this. Whenever I go I feel a sense of calm, like the waters of my mind are settling and the tides are turning to something more positive. It reminds me of all is right with the world, and settles my soul. So this year its booked and I can count down they days till I visit my beach, like a child anticipating the onset of Christmas. Bliss.

One Response to “Praia”

  1. Charlotte January 6, 2011 at 9:41 am #

    I love a good beach! That looks lush 🙂

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