The Suitcase Lady


April 23, 2013, 9:22 pm

The hour before sunset on an ocean beach exudes calm. The wave-jumpers, sand castle builders, sun seekers, shell collectors and volleyball players all have departed. Shore birds do swoop down to catch a last fish and the sandpipers run around like over-wound wind up toys. Otherwise, the peace is palpable.

The remains of the day are everywhere. Complex sand castles and shell gardens await  the ravages of high tide. The day’s deposits of shells, sponges and seaweed are scattered on the beach like hundreds of still lifes. I attempt to capture these vignettes with my camera. A poor photographer at best, I don’t know how to deal with the rapidly lengthening shadows and diminishing light. I click and hope for the best.

As our part of the planet spins into darkness, the sun puts on a spectacular show. My vision-impaired Aunt used to ask me, “Do you think we will have a good one tonight?” Her tired eyes could still see brilliant sunsets. I wish she could have seen this one.

Click here for 40 seconds of tranquility.

Note: The long, curly things on the beach are whelk egg cases. Filmed at Sanibel Island, Florida.


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