The kayak club cleared the beach with gusto heading out to dinner with friends, home, or even a vacation in Montana was announced with glee. He has a cabin in the sawtooth mountains where he plans to hike and relax for the last weeks of summer break.
The dinner cruise droned by after a tour of the nearby islands and disembarked its satisfied passengers at the nearby ferry terminal, heading home with that feeling one gets after inhaling an enormous amount of fresh sea air. Hair blown askew, stiffened by salty breezes, they make their way hand in hand to their Subaru, satisfied with their choice for such a grand outdoor experience.
A lone woman sits on a boulder at the quiet end of the beach. Her bike handlebars askew as she left it parked on the goose-poop covered lawn. Her forehead draws together in a frown at the intrusion of another woman taking a seat on a nearby bench. Solitude is clearly desired as she works through and ponders her troubles. The bench seated woman feels the discomfort of invading another’s space and moves on to a quiet spot to watch seagulls and sailboats and write about her view, snapping a few photos.
Jets fly overhead for their final approach to the nearby airport with those returning from trips around the country or around the world. They will disembark with that left over stale feeling one gets from flying too far for too long and they will breathe deeply the cool August day air and say “home sweet home”.
A helicopter flies quickly south, meaning another crisis in some family as a loved one is rushed to Seattle for advanced care and the patient will disembark on a journey through healing and recovery. Or not.
A train rumbles past filled with passengers all looking forward to either a return home or an exciting adventure beyond the routine of home. The incessant warning of the engineer announces their passing.
Multiple sailboats glide in the evening breeze like the seagulls that swoop and soar as the sun sets slowly beyond them. Some are racing while others take their time to embrace the freedom of being on the rippled sea, inhaling that same fresh air that will later lead to a deep restorative sleep.
The woman on the bench is now alone and there is a deep peaceful lull in the activity. Waves lap lazily onto the shore bringing her treasures to find. Sticks and stones, shells and glass. The beauty and artistry of nature in the perfection of an evening at the bay surrounded by the San Juan islands, the Salish Sea, the harbor, the beach and the sky.