Tranquility ~ the state of being free from commotion or disturbance; the absence of agitation
The mere anticipation of being in my favorite hotel room overlooking Haystack Rock (which grows out of the Pacific in Cannon Beach, Oregon) triggers an impending sense of tranquility somewhere deep inside of me. Once there, the peacefulness in my soul is palpable.
We’ve been going to Cannon Beach for over thirty years – to veg out, to watch the water and the sun and the storms and to just simply marvel at the beauty of the place. It never grows old. It always seems both familiar and new.
This December, it was a three day storm watcher. The sand ran down the beach and the rain blew sideways in sheets. The water roiled and thick mist floated from the wavetops. Groups of seagulls played in the wind – swooping, floating, hanging in the air like kites on a March afternoon. It looked like they were having a blast out there. A handful of hardy souls walked on the beach leaning back into the wind, hoods up and heads down.
We watched from inside with a fire crackling, hot coffee, and books at hand. I had trouble keeping my nose in the book, choosing instead to just sit by the window and watch. Somewhere in my head is a childhood memory of a line that my mom used to say (variously attributed to Satchel Paige, Winnie the Pooh, and Pogo)…”Sometimes I sits and thinks, but sometimes I just sits”. And that’s what I did for the better part of three days – just sat and watched, savoring the beauty of the beach and relishing the time to just sit.
On the third morning, the rain and wind stopped for a while and folks magically appeared on the beach. Most of them had dogs with them. Dogs of all sizes and shapes – joyously running on the beach. Chasing balls and sticks, romping in the water, rolling in the sand, teasing new playmates. I love to see dogs at play and I am especially fond of watching them romp unrestrained on the beach. I know that they are experiencing their own version of dog tranquility – the absence of the agitation induced by a leash. Their rowdy exuberance is infectious. There is no better anti-depressant for me than a wet waggy greeting from a happy dog on the beach.
The respite on the beach was brief. The wind and rain returned as quickly as they’d stopped, and we were back inside with the fire and the coffee. And soon it was time to leave. I brought the tranquility home with me, though, and it will linger until the next time my spirit needs nourishing. When it does, I’ll go back to the beach and just sit.
Lynn Hancock is a retired teacher and elementary school principal. She is not a blogger, but is a regular reader of Nerd’s Eye View and Road Notes, written by her son, Ben. Her husband is still working, but they travel whenever they can.