An intense start to the working week sees me taking a break Tuesday afternoon and I walk in to the beach to chill out in the summer warmth. As I'm walking in there are cracks of thunder overhead but it's still hot and sunny, and from the cliff top I see a rain cloud hovering over a perfectly blue ocean. I wish I had my camera for this because it's spectacular, but instead imprint it in my mind. I keep walking, the rain seems quite localised and I can cope with a passing shower. I get to the beach and the water is vibrant - it's like a photoshopped postcard. Blue-green waves fringed with white froth and a sky of various shades of blue with prominent white and grey clouds. There's a very cute guy (who preceded me on the path) and a handful of others scattered over this postcard and I'm glad now that I pushed past the thunder. I deposit my backpack, towel, and most of my clothes in the shade and wander the beach, contemplating a swim and enjoying the scenery.
Right when I think things just can't get better, I feel spot of rain, and another, and then someone opens the trapdoor and all the water falls out of the sky. Instantly drenching. It's suddenly dark, there's even hail, the cute guy has bolted and I see no one else on the beach. I cover my head in case the hail gets bigger, which it doesn't, and I rush to my gear which is already saturated by the time I get there. I've turned off my mobile on the way because my shorts are already wet, and soon it will be too, and throw it into a seemingly dry section of the bag. I stuff everything I have under a rock and a bush and try to form some kind of water management plan which seems futile anyway in this rain. I leave my shorts too and stand there naked in the rain. The ocean has a matte finish from the rain and the clouds make it feel inviting and cosy, like the summer lake we used to camp at as a kid. So I decide it's time for a swim, there's nothing better than swimming naked in the rain anyway is there? And there isn't. As I swim I see this guy standing naked back from the beach, bulging out from under an umbrella. It seems absurd. I laugh and dive back into the water. I feel like a kid again and dolphin dive around in the waves watching the huge drops of water rising out from where others have fallen.
Eventually I get out, and it's still raining. I stand on a rock overlooking the beach looking back at the waves. It's still warm, spectacular and then it starts to hail - again - I just stand there and laugh uncontrollably. The beach is all mine now and I think it would be the perfect time to be making love here now in this rain, but alas as I have already said I'm alone on the beach - so I just keep laughing - surely that will ensure no one will make it happen anyway. The rain fades and the sun edges out from the clouds. The water is cool on my skin, but the sun is hot, all at once. I retrieve my gear and find my phone dipping in a shallow pool of water within it. I hang my clothes on bushes and rocks and wring out my towel which now weighs a tonne. My backpack contents scattered, I head for the water again - it's now glassy, crystal clear and even more spectacular with waves perfect for bodysurfing, so I oblige.
Eventually I emerge, shivering in the hot sun. I have no idea of the time, and it feels like I'm on summer holiday. Work, what's that?
Notes to self : Always take waterproof camera to the beach. Novels and water don't mix. Consider better backpack. Take The Frenchman (or equivalent) for next beach rainstorm.
Todays Wild Wednesday activity is anything with the theme: naked, wet, stormy and hot.