Monday, August 31, 2015

Postcard from El Granada

Just south of San Francisco there's a five-mile crescent of champagne-pale soft sand, and at the northernmost tip, behind the headland from Mavericks beach - one of California's top beaches for surfing - a small community developed in the last century as a seaside resort. It has a 'concentric circle street planning' (very easy to get lost in, if you were wondering) with wide avenues of eucalyptus trees, and a coastal path runs alongside the beach, between the sand dunes and the mega-busy Highway One running down the Pacific Coast all the way to Mexico.  Around 5000 people are lucky enough to live here, and I've been lucky enough to visit annually for the last five years.
This year, as usual, my plan was to walk and to write and enjoy the incredible beauty of this peaceful place, but somehow all I've done for a week is walk and take pictures.

 For around five or six hours every day,  I've walked along beaches and coastal paths and across Pillar Point bluff: I've pictured seals & pelicans, flowers & butterflies, rabbits and even a racoon as well as long views of rolling waves and closeup patterns on sand and bark... peaceful solitary days, supplemented with some pleasant interaction: a yard party and folk concert on Saturday ~ here's my generous friends' lovely home, and my host Mo Robinson headlining with harmonies from Peter Bland,
and a few of the images that stay with me, along with songs like Sunny AfternoonHotel California, and a phrase from a poem by Pablo Medina: what the ocean says, and says again and then forgets.

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