These days, I start several mornings a week with sand between my toes.
I live in La Jolla, CA just a few minutes’ drive to La Jolla Shores beach. As daylight breaks over the mountains to the east, I back out of my garage and drive the five minutes to the beach parking lot. There I join the early birds of the beach – the surfers, ocean swimmers, and beach runners and walkers. I slip off my flip flops and start my journey down the sand to the Scripps Oceanography pier.
As I take rapid strides letting the saltwater caress my feet, my mind wanders, my eyes gaze out to the waves and wander along the horizon. The sound of the waves, the calls of the gulls, the view pelicans flying in formation as they coast over the water, or the anticipation that I might be lucky and see a pod of dolphins dancing along the horizon are the only thoughts in my head.
It is in that moment while I walk the beach that I say to myself, what a beautiful place.
During the pandemic travel stopped, literally stopped. Those of us who love to travel, explore cultures, indulge in different cuisine, and partake in experiences, longed for a new place to open like a gift.
As I leave the beach, stroll over to the foot rinse station and walk back to my car, I’m exhilarated to start the day, I feel alive to the world around me the way I do when I am visiting a new place and everything I see and hear is a gift to be opened.
I share my story of my beach walks to remind you – and myself – that no matter how near or far we travel from our homes, we can always find a bit of travel magic, a gift to be opened.