Each year I like to get away from it all to a place where I can just put my responsibilities behind me and relax. I just returned from my happy place in the Outer Banks (OBX) of North Carolina where I go during hurricane season. Mind you, I don’t go with the hopes of experiencing a hurricane – it’s just that I usually go there during that time. If a hurricane should actually blow into town, relaxation requires a bit more concentration.
Of course, many hours are spent on the beach taking in the breeze, the surf, and the wide array of interesting people who under other circumstances would never be seen in public the way they freely saunter along the sand. This is why I bring a sketchbook to the beach.
This first drawing is of two beach-walkin’ fellas who did not look like they had any earthly connection to each other. You can see that the fella in the foreground was hanging onto his days when he was in an 80’s hair band despite the fact that his former 80’s physique has gone the way of 8-track tapes. The other guy hit his middle age in stride with a laid back attitude and a lanky walk. Both had kids accompanying them running around looking for shells and playing in the surf. I like to think that they were probably brothers-in-law taking the kids on a walk to give their wives a break.
There is something about going to the beach so late in the summer season. With many schools in session, the beaches are quieter than during the prime summer months, the heat is no longer debilitating, and all the mature and <ahem> well-rounded adults venture out into the light for their daily dose of vitamin D. Such was the case with this next gentleman.
Now, when the kiddies come to the beach with kites, they don’t care if there is wind or not. They gleefully run up and down the beach to launch their technicolor plastic playthings. When adults get that same gleam in their eye, they have the good sense to come on a day sponsored by a strong wind. On this particularly windy day, four adults wandered over the dunes where two of them immediately dropped their chairs to the sand and launched their kites with nary a trot between them necessary to generate any wind speed. Although I imagine trotting was not a common activity for either of them.
Well, now you know about my happy place. Where is your happy place? On second thought, don’t tell me if you really don’t want me to show up with my sketchbook.