Salty Air and Sandy Toes


The beach is a happy place. Photo by Tori Harrill

The scent of sunscreen mixes with the salty air as the breeze blows through the vibrant arch of umbrellas. The waves crash against the shore, playing a game of tug-of-war with the seashells. My closed eyes opened to just a squint to avoid the blinding sun reflecting off the water. In the distance, flying across the ocean of blue, is a banana boat. Even at a distance, the smiles and laughter of people are evident. To the right, an elderly couple sit perfectly placed under their striped umbrella. Their hands were intertwined, and their smiles showed the softest lines, indicating years of past smiles and laughter. To the left, a speaker blares while playing beach-tune classics like Bob Marley and Weezer’s “Island in the Sun.” 

Down by the water, two boys play, throwing a football, pushing each other farther into the water. To the left, a little girl, her hair in pigtails and her smile as immense as ever, is working fiercely on her sand castle. She runs back and forth from the ocean to her castle with a bucket of water, pouring it every time to surround her castle. Her family beams as they watch her joy. In the distance, a pod of dolphins crosses the surf, past the passionate surfers and boogie boarders. A young girl comes across the sand pushing a cart labeled “Italian Ice.” The kids grab the hands of their parents and flock to her, politely demanding their choice of flavor. Sunglasses hide the closed eyes of those giving into full relaxation and sleep. The sounds of laughter mix with the crash of every wave. The breeze of salty air passes through once again, bringing the tiniest break from the sun’s heat. I take a deep breath, happy to feel the sand beneath my feet. There’s no better feeling than salty air and sandy toes. There’s no better place than the beach.