Thursday, May 14, 2009

Cold Brown Sea

There’s a storm coming this weekend. Love those. There can’t be a better feeling than sitting in a car in Sea Point watching the waves defeat the sea wall. You have to be able to run for cover, though. Storms are crappy for at least two million Capetonians.

Still, to be on the rocks, or huddled away at Kalk Bay sipping coffee while the elements do their dawn of creation thing is pretty impressive.

Nothing better than walking on the beach in winter, feeling the wind on your head/in your hair. I’ve never really ‘got’ that poem, footprints, though. I’d feel more than slightly disturbed if phantom footprints appeared next to mine. I like my beaches predictable: The soft crunch of the wet sand, the plosive suction of the barely-concealed dog poo.

City beaches aren’t great for beachcombing. I look for shells, or interesting pieces of wood I want to pretend are sculptures, but really they are just useless chunks of wood that end up on the braai, but invariably find less interesting (apart from their potential lethality) objects, like syringes, broken bottles and sagging remnants of frantic family planning.

I’ll avoid Kalk Bay this weekend: apparently the sewer is leaking raw sewage in to the sea next to the Brass Bell (is cooked sewage any better? Mental note- never find out).

(apologies to John Masefield and Spike Milligan):
I must go down to the sea again
The lonely sea and the sky
There’s a hillock of stinking faeces there
Nearly three feet high.

Am I the only person in the world for whom the movie Jaws tainted beaches forever? Nothing will stop me from being convinced that I’m going to be the idiot unlucky enough to stumble across body parts nestling at the water’s edge.

But that’s all part of the thrill, right?


  1. Your emotions about the beach confuse me. But I only like beaches that are eternally trapped in summertime.

    On Jaws: I have trouble swimming in a POOL after that movie.

  2. we had an *almost* tornado here last night. Storms wreck stuff in other areas but we were spared, minus a few damaged trees here and there around town.

    The beaches you describe sound much like some in New Jersey...

  3. @Briane P: I do enjoy the beach in summer, at 7am, deserted, not a speedo in sight. Beaches are better than drugs for changing moods. And, if sharks are your nemesis, then don't come here: The largest Great White breeding ground in the world...
    @Brandy101: Storms are great to experience, in the luxury of warm homes. The beaches round here can be incredibly beautiful, but the popular ones get trashed by litter. Jersey beaches probably do get their share of body parts in hefty bags.

  4. Classic vintage Scott, this post. I wonder sometimes, what goes on in that head of yours. Your posts offer some clues. Slightly odd is my summation. You were scared by a fish?

  5. @SMP: Vintage? Hmm, loaded word, that. I don't order these posts- they are pretty much streams of consciousness, so take that as you will. Slightly odd is ok, I can still function in normal society. And yes, a fish with endless rows of razor sharp teeth, which at any time may decide short-sightedly that I am a seal? Terrified.
    And- you mean, you're glad I didn't extend it to a second verse?

  6. Oh come on, sure it has teeth, but it only wants to nibble on your leg a little ... :)

  7. @Herb: Good ta see you, too, H.
    @SMP: Seals don't have legs, I don't have flippers.


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