A Summer Day On A South Georgia Beach
Just over the horizon, on the eastern shore of Georgia, a pale yellow light creeps up at the edge where sea and sky meet. Slowly the darkness turns to dawn and the day begins. Streaks of yellow slowly rise up to paint the sky. They turn the black canvas of the night to shades of blue,from the darkest hues to lighter ones. Birds sing, insects chirp. The nocturnal creatures have bedded down for the humid sultry day.
The morning belongs to those that will find their prey in the hours of sunlight. Terns and sandpipers begin to prance. Seagulls and pelicans dive and swoop.The high tide of the night begins to ebb. Tiny fish are left behind in the tide pools. Their lives will be short, as they will become an early lunch for the diving birds.
Ghost crabs scurry across the sand, busily burrowing themselves into the cool sand to escape their predators and the heat of the coming day. As the tide rolls out, the rhythm begins. It is another beautiful summer day on a South Georgia beach. Tides will shift, the sands will change.
It is time to write a new day
Today will not look like tomorrow on this beach, nor will it it look like yesterday.We engage the present. Yesterday has washed away.Fresh waves will pound upon the shore,wiping away the sorrows etched into the sands of time. A fresh smooth slate of beach is left behind.
The sun climbs yet higher in the sky. The reflection of the sun upon the water is like a trillion diamonds have fallen from the sky.People now begin to stir. The low and mournful hum of pilot boats reminds us that human beings will soon descend. Trash will be thrown, oil will be spilled, medical waste will wash upon the shore. Some people will care, some won't. Slowly humans arrive on the beach to enjoy the day. Screen doors open as the lucky vacationers and residents awaken to the beautiful scene and enjoy their morning coffee on the deck.
As the sun climbs higher, the sky turns lighter.Today there are no storm clouds.
Vacationers are relieved. They have checked into the local hotels to have some sun and fun. The only road that leads to the island begins to crowd with automobiles. The long slow line snakes it's way over the bridge.
The cars are packed with happy vacationers and their supplies.Some are from far away to stay a week or two. Some are "Day Trippers" from the nearby city, only for a day.As the sun climbs higher the heat grows greater. Some seek shelter under umbrellas that dot the shore like huge colorful polka dots. Small children cool off in tide pools. Swimmers and surfers find their refuge from the heat while having great fun.
Across the dunes and up the street old sailors and other colorful characters hang out in the air conditioned bars. They sip their fruity rum drinks or their frosty drafts while spinning yarns and tall tales and teasing the tourists.As the afternoon drifts by some of the throngs of people will wander off the beach for a late lunch- a hot dog from the side walk cafe, or perhaps a tasty fresh seafood meal. A sign in the window reads: ALL WET? AH HECK, COME ON IN. They enjoy their lunch, browse the shops to look at beach themed nick knacks and picture post cards of the area. Maybe they will come back later and make their purchases. But for now they cross the crowded parking lots that all sport signs reading FULL. They are headed back to the beach. They are just in time! The tide has come in,lapping at the edges of the belongings they left behind. And as they move their things back closer to the dunes, the sun silently begins it's descent toward the western horizon.The crowd begins to thin. Families with young children will be the first the leave. They are tired but happy. It's time to go back to the hotel rooms and rented beach cottages for a long nap. Day Trippers must climb into hot cars and hope they can beat the heavy traffic back to town. College students and other die hards are left behind tossing Frisbees and making their evening plans.Seagulls gather to feast on crumbs of unfinished snacks.
As the sun drops to the horizon, the crowd gets thinner still. Young lovers and senior citizens stop to admire the beauty of a coastal sunset. The colors are breath taking-shades of pink and purple and gold. Slowly they too leave the beach. It is time for nature and man to separate now. It has been a beautiful day,As the last light of the day leaves the sky, a local resident strolls his "part" of the beach picking up trash that has been carelessly left behind. He places the trash in one of the waste barrels that have been placed at the end of every block. He glances down and sighs as he reads the sign that says: THANK YOU FOR VISITING US. COME BACK OFTEN, AND LEAVE ONLY YOUR FOOTPRINTS.