Musings From The Seaside

     The air is ripe with the rich scent of sea salt, infused
with candy floss and hot, greasy chips. The icy cold waves gently caress the
shore, and the vast steely grey expanse of the ocean stretches back as far as
the eye can see. The beach is a jumble of sand, dirt, pebbles and shells, made
wet and sticky by the touch of the sea. Beyond the empty plain, a line of
postcard-perfect houses lines its edge, while towering cliffs stand as
guardians at either end of the scene. Overhead, the sun strains to break
through the dark, angry clouds which dominate the sky, but occasionally a few
persistent rays of warmth succeed in slipping past.
     Seagulls swoop low over the water, calling out loudly to
each other. The joyful music of the arcade drifts through the air, mingling with
the shouts of the children it entertains. The less-than-perfect weather means
that the beach is not busy, but a few determined souls are out to enjoy
themselves. A dirty, well-used ball bounces along the gritty sand, chased by a
team of gangly youths. The barking of dogs rings through the air, as they frolic
along the shore, splashing in the waves and dirtying their coats in the sand. The
deep blue sail of a windsurfer scuds across the horizon, barely distinguishable
against the dark sky. Ice-cream drips down the chins of children, as mothers
tut and attempt to wipe away the sticky mess. An elderly couple strolls arm in
arm, nibbling on their newspaper-wrapped chips and reminiscing about many other
days spent blissfully on these shores. A yellow umbrella twirls in the wind, as
the bare legs below it paddle in the icy shallows.

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