The December holidays are here – a forced break from work, as the office is closed until the 2nd of January. I decide to engage a bit with the life other people take such immense pleasure in. I remember my sister being a huge fan of sunning on the beach, reading a book, and languishing beneath the hot, African sun. So it’s off to Strand to enjoy some of the same, and to see if I ‘get’ it.
I wander around taking photos, to show I was here (if it’s not captured for digital social media, it’s not real…?) and then lie down on my towel to read.
It’s hot, and windy; sand keep blowing in my eyes despite my wrap-around sunglasses. There are cigarette butts everywhere, I feel revulsion at this litter, and anger at the thoughtless idiots – countless idiots, obviously, gauging by the vast number of butts lying around – for a moment I get lost in a downward spiral of hate and anger – but why should I give these morons power over my emotions? I continue to read, but a pod of younger-than-I sun tanners comes to nest nearby, and though I cannot hear them because I have music blasting through my headset, I am distracted. They are in my space, I feel watched, judged – why? Because I am on my own? Because somehow they know I am a junkie? I don’t know. I feel uncomfortable, but I use the increasing burn on my unprotected skin as the reason to leave, but it’s not really that.
It is arrogant to think that I am entitled to have so much personal space, that I expect whole swathes of the beach to be left open for my personal enjoyment; it is arrogant to think these people even noticed me, or spared me enough thought to deliver the judgement I felt. But I feel that judgement often…eating alone in a restaurant; sitting alone in a movie. As I write this I know there is a full blog posting on the soul’s knowledge it is not meant to be alone…maybe I will write it, one day.
© Dave Luis 2012. All Rights Reserved.