The beach was only a thirty minute drive from my home in the leafy green suburbs of the lower North Shore. We lived in a small apartment block overlooking a park.
We knew most of our neighbours. V. and L. on the ground floor. J. and D. and their two children just below us. Our son grew up with their children who would come up to play after school. On warm summer evenings our little family would walk to our local ice cream parlour in the next suburb.
I didn’t think of going to the beach until friends at Church invited me to come along. We were to spend about forty-five minutes to an hour walking or running on the sand before meeting up at a local cafe to eat a delicious breakfast.
We were going to meet just before sunrise.
I was hesitant at first but agreed. I set my alarm clock for 5:15 am, thinking it was a terrible time to be awake. When it went off, I groggily got out of bed and changed into leggings and an old t-shirt. I shoved my feet in some runners and headed out the door, down to our garage and into our car.
The sky was stained a soft pink when I arrived at the beach. I could see the shore in the distance as I parked my car. The sun wasn’t up as yet, but I knew it was going to be soon.
I could hear the surf as I stepped out of the car. I could feel the fresh wind and see the soft glow of the sky.
It was beautiful.
The runners in our group went on ahead while the rest of us walked some distance behind them.
My feet sank into the soft sand as I headed to the firmer part of the beach near the water’s edge. Not only was it easier to walk there, but I loved feeling the cool water over my feet as the surf crashed only metres away.
And then, in the distance, the sun started to rise from the horizon. I could see the light change and for a few bewitching moments the world turned golden before it turned bright.
I closed my eyes, felt its warmth on my face and breathed in the salty sea air.
It was magical.
All I could feel was the sun, the wind and the surf. For just a moment, I felt free and grateful to be alive.
I fell in love with sunrises during that beach walk. This was a new day. A fresh start. A time of new opportunities and hope.
This is the day the Lord has made;Psalm 118:24, NKJV Bible
We will rejoice and be glad in it.
There has been other sunrise walks since then. Other beautiful tracks to experience. But I still loved catching that golden light as the sun rose above the horizon at our local beach.
The sun rises over buildings here in the heart of London. It is still lovely to catch the light, but the attractions of this vast, old, amazing city are different. I am looking forward to exploring it again once this lockdown is over.
Our Sydney beach will always be there.