On the Beach

September 29, 2008

What will the boy remember of yesterday? Years hence, is Atticus, my son of three, doomed to never recall his first day at the new edge of his known world, the Pacific Coast?

As I watched him run toward and away from tiny advancing and retreating waves, I realized how fleeting the moment probably was. Not just his memory of what he did but the pure delight of not caring about anything else. Neither the event or the feeling might ever return.

Or maybe I underestimate Atticus. Maybe he always will be able to conjure up the salt air, the warm fall morning, the light glinting off water, and the joy of outracing the ocean.

Or maybe the highlight was digging along a creek sluicing across the beach. If his mother and I let him, he’d probably still be filling his bucket with sand and dumping it in fresh water rushing to the sea.

I watched clump after clump of sand collected then disappear.  “The sand, it’s gone,” I told him after one dumping. He said, “I still see it.”