So it all started when my brother texted me:
“Be ready at 9am, I may need you for something,”
“I may not need you so I can’t say,”
‘But what is it? Will I be going out?’
“Just be ready,”
And this went on for an hour before I gave up. The next morning I got ready with my niece and sat by the door on my phone pondering on whether it’s a good day to go to the park?
The doorbell rang and I opened it to see my brother and his five year old son smiling at me, his wife and his two year old daughter not far behind.
“Hey, guess where we’re going?”
“Where?” I asked as I approached my brother’s car,
“We won’t need the car,” My brother grinned; I paused and raised my eyebrows…
“Salmaan, where are we going?”
There are a lot of places I haven’t been. The beach is one of them. Crazy, I know!
We took a coach there, and I’m pretty sure it was the longest journey of my life, although it was said to supposedly have been only two hours. I fell asleep for the most part of it, but towards the end when I gazed out the window, I was glad I was awake. The instant change of environment was evident! The beach has this strange sort of atmosphere; Southend beach had that sort of atmosphere. It’s a strange atmosphere that needs to be experienced to be understood. There were these fancy hotels, arcades, and one too many fish and chip shops. The theme park at the heart of it all was alive with all its screaming and laughing. We had arrived.
We walked aimlessly about at first, but when we reached the ‘sand’ I couldn’t move for a second. I was paralyzed with amazement.
That’s all you could sea! – Sea what I did there!? 😉
Seriously though, as someone who has only ever seen buildings upon buildings and never really seen the horizon I was fascinated because here I was, staring at the vast ocean. It is literally breathtaking – that first moment when it all hits you, the sea, the sand and salty air.
Southend beach doesn’t have as much sand as it does vicious rocks. That’s what we sat on, and I must say, it was painful! Even through my shoes I could feel the rocks trying to pierce me! That didn’t stop me from taking off my shoes and running into the shallow part of the water though.
First, I attempted to make a sand castle, which failed horribly. The sand got stuck in the bucket and I just gave up, then we threw rocks into the sea and seaweed at each other after that my brother came with bucket. Before we even knew it, we in the midst of huge water fight! Now remember, we were bare feet, and also remember there are rocks everywhere… now imagine how excruciatingly agonizing it was to have to run like that! It was amusing nonetheless!
When it was all over, we sat by the sea and ate our sandwiches before heading over to the pier.
“One way ticket please, we’ll walk back,”
We went onto a train that took us down the pier and made me realise just how much larger the sea could get. Apparently a lot larger! When we reached the other side clouds had started forming in the sky, rain was due at 3 ‘o clock – in an hour.
We sauntered into the gift shop and spent way too long browsing through the cool stuff there, the woman at the counter told us stories about how the rescue boats and team saved a boy last week. I brought myself a 3D bookmark – since I’m a book worm – with a light house and seagulls on it. Before we stepped outside… to the rain!
It was only 2:30 yet the light drizzle had already begun, we could just walk through it right?
So Very Wrong.
It seemed okay at first, but it began to hail down heavily just as the British weather always does! I’m sure all of us were drenched to our underwear, because I sure was! However I still found myself laughing with my sister-in-law as we were pretty much showered in more rain water than we could probably drink one week! When managed to get back again, it really felt like we had triumphed! And in that moment as we reached the shelter of a building I thought “This is something I’m never going to forget!”
And what’s the beach without the fish and chips!? We walked into a fish and chip shop and as we did we left a trail of puddles behind us, the owners were super nice though! They told us it was okay because no one can predict the British weather! With little time left we grabbed our food, thanked the kind owners and headed for the coach to chow down on our much deserved meal.
And as I sat there, wet, tired and shivering from the cold. I couldn’t help but relive the day in a sweet slumber…