When I was younger I loved the beach. Living in a place where lakes abound, I was fascinated by the ocean and couldn't wait to get there. When I did I marvelled at how beach sand is so much richer and more coarse than the crappy backyard sand they truck in to line the beaches where I'm from.
But all that changed when I became a mother.
Sand is the enemy. It gets everywhere. There was a time when I didn't mind taking a nice walk on the beach and shaking out my shoes when we got home.
Now I have to worry about shaking out shoes, ears, butts, toes, and still finding sand in the strangest places months afterwards.
Some of us (my mother included) are crazy enough to put a whole box of the stuff in the yard so that it can be tracked through the house all year long. Not me.
The trunk of my car looks like a sandbox from just a few modest trips to the beach where I swear I shook and rinsed and de-sanded everything before we left.
There are toys that she will no longer play with because they have something that appears to be a permanent sand dust on them.
There are sea shell collections that pop up in very unusual spots. A few days ago I found 3 of them shoved in the dirt in a houseplant.
And yet, in spite of all the trouble and all the mess, we are still constantly drawn back to the beach, aren't we? We spend all winter longing for the damp breeze and the hot feeling as we dig our toes into the sun-warmed sand and recline while the kids play with a bucket of sludge from the edge of the water.
There is something incredible and beautiful about sand. And its ability to stay with us long after we think we've left it.
(Inspired by a prompt from the Red Dress Club)