My computer clock tells me that it’s 2.09 am on 31 December and yet my wristwatch says 15.o9 on 29 December. Such is the joy of being in two places at the one time. I really wanted to go for a swim today – after mass – so we went down to Pebble Beach, also known as IliIli (lots of small pebbles) in Captain Cook, Honaunau. We had the place practically to ourselves but any thoughts of taking a dip were put to rest as the waves surged and roared their way to shore.
The view was spectacular and as the currents ripped and tore the pebbles, the world came into perspective. Such was the strength of the ocean that no one stood a chance. That lone man – a hefty 6 foot +, weighing at least 250lbs – went flat on his ass and sat, stunned, as the water washed over him. Those who turn their back on the ocean do so at their peril.
Walls of water showed little mercy for anything caught in their way. We perched far enough way to enjoy the spectacle, out of reach of the spray, but still, by times, a couple of waves came close enough to make us scramble. It was mesmerising. Who needs special effects or TV when you have this in your front yard. The locals are a tad upset that this beach features in the guide books – it’s not a swimming beach – not in winter, and every year people get caught out. Not necessarily swimmers, but those on shore who turn their back on the water and fail to see what’s heading their way. And the only sign posted is one that says nudity is prohibited.
The beach is littered with black pebbles, all of which are gone by February, swept out into the ocean along with the sand from the other beaches on the island. Where do they go? And how do they find their way back? And where did this lone white pebble come from? Given a few more hours, I’m sure that the answer to the meaning of life would have come to me …. but we were expecting visitors and the cocktails were acalling.
I can’t think of a better way to end the year that to sit underneath a palm tree on the edge of the ocean and watch Mother Nature do her thing. And yet again, for the fifty millionth time, I promise myself that the next place I live will be within hearing distance of the sea. It has wonderful way of putting things into perspective and making me realise that there’s little point in worrying about stuff I can’t change. Far better to appreciate what I have and give thanks for that.