I walked on the beach this morning, the same beach I walked on when I was a teen-ager. It all felt familiar, like nothing had really changed. And, in fact, nothing had changed.
Now, forty-five years later, the tide still ebbed and flowed. The waves still rolled towards shore and tumbled into whitewater like they always have. Seaweed floated on the surface of the sea, some of it standing vertical, not too far offshore. Pelicans patrolled an emerging sky just outside my reach, or within it had I just had arms a little longer, and dolphins lazed about playfully in the glassy calm ocean like children frolicking on grass.
People looked the same as well; mothers with babies, the surfers, the beachcombers, fishermen, and the beach patrol. The moms and dads, they were there, with two kids, racing the water to deeper sand in a futile attempt to keep their feet from getting wet. Everything was as it had been, and how it will be in the foreseeable future.
I walked the length of the pier, as I used to do, bought a corn dog at the bait and tackle shop, about a quarter mile out to sea, then sat and watched young lovers stealing time from their hurried, and harried, lives, time they finally found to set aside just for themselves.
Clouds drifted by overhead, slowly, reflecting the pace of the people on the pier.
I drifted in and out of reminiscence, present at times, conscious, and at others just barely touching the fringes of life in the now.
I walked into the past this morning. It all felt familiar, like nothing had really changed. And, in fact, nothing had changed, except myself.
And the cost of a corn dog.