Of sand and stars and time

I’m sitting on the beach at Mar de Jade on the Pacific coast of Mexico.

The sun is setting, fire-red, turquoise, slate. The stones and sand, still warm. About twenty feet from where I’m sitting I can see the occasional silhouettes of fish leaping from the water. And further, westwards, a group of pelicans are circling, sharp against the twilight. Each, as if taking turns, chooses a moment to furl its wings and dive into the waves before climbing, fish-laden, to join the others. I sit for nearly an hour, as the sky darkens. The pelicans wheel to the south. The tall lights of distant boats come into view.

This moment, with its tender joyful sadness, sings to me of sand and stars, of friends who are here with me, and of my family far away and back home on another side of the world.

I remember the feeling of such places from my childhood – the easy feel of being swept up into an endless and timeless landscape, wondrous and vast. And today, in my forty-fifth year, the same wonder tugs at me.

But from this part of life it’s different from before. I can already feel the inevitability of losing all of this, one day and who knows when, for another kind of timelessness.

Photo by Justin Wise

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