Above image: Sea Grass. Taken at Shoreline Park, Santa Barbara, California, November 11, 2012.
I was very lucky to break away from Los Angeles this past weekend for some much needed solitude in Santa Barbara. As I’m reminded time and time again, sometimes the best medicine is to separate yourself from the everyday and freewheel through the streets of a not-so-familiar city to pull yourself out of wherever you’ve been hiding.
I got an early start Friday morning and boarded the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train that headed north up the coast. I very much enjoyed looking up and across the aisle and seeing nothing but water through the large picture-box windows. It didn’t take much effort for me to imagine that I was industriously riding across this massive Pacific Ocean towards my final destination. That, along with it being my first Amtrak train ride, set a very fantastical tone to my weekend trip early on. It became apparent to me that whatever was weighing heavy on me in Los Angeles was about to come out in the wash.
I wanted to explore the beach before the weekend was over. I had brought my tripod and camera along with me and was set on examining my surroundings through my camera lens, like many, many times before. I found myself at Shoreline Park, a “long, narrow ocean-side park that offers fabulous views of the harbor, the Islands and the mountains”. Before I knew it, I had spent 3 hours on that beach, barefoot and wind tussled, my hungry eye satisfied.
Click on any of the images for a closer look.
I walked up the beach until I found a private area surrounded by jagged rocks and a tidal pool that was blanketed with thick, green patches of sea grass. I had found this place (a “local secret”, so I’ve read) at low tide, so it was perfect timing for this sea grass to reveal itself to me.
I set up my tripod and camera to take a self portrait of myself on the beach. It was quite windy, so I used my bag as a weight to keep my tripod stable. The 10 second timer was set, and after a bit of fussing and adjusting, a shot of myself with the Santa Barbara winds was mine.
Left: What a beautiful little specimen, don’t you think? I took it home with me as a memento of this beautiful day. / Right: I found a sea-weathered Bud Light can that looked as if it had taken a BB gun pellet or two.
I wasn’t alone. Along with the local seagulls, there was an unusual number of black crows on this beach, pecking away at sea creatures that had become vulnerable at low tide. Black crows on a beach? Alright, I’m open to it.
Here I leave you with one last set of photographs. I couldn’t resist setting these side by side. My thick hair swept aside by the wind and the lush sea grass that had enchanted me that afternoon. I’d like to think that maybe for an instant, that beach and I were joined in a moment in time.