From 1972-1987 pretty much every day of the summer my uncle Phil and Aunty Hil would pick us up in their hired combi and drive us to Muizenberg Beach, singing “My bags are packed” and “It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to” all the way. Then we’d swim in the waves for hours.
Walking along the beach in Muizenberg today, after 10 years away, I started to walk then kind of kick-skip in the tiny little waves, walking parallel to the shoreline. Wetting feet then calves with small splashes. Then turning and walking into the sea. Jumping against the small waves, resisting (tippy-toed) but also allowing them to reach higher and higher till the bellybutton, the point of no return. Then diving under.
It seems to me that if you were happy as a child, the sensations that surrounded you then, will hold you in thrall for life. How else to explain the flood of good feelings I have being woken by the wail of the passing train, walking barefoot on the hot pavement (adjusting my weight for the broken glass), taking in the smell of wee and stompies, salt air and melting tar, smiling at everyone, feeling at home.
Something new for my Muizenberg: Kiting.
Never changes: swimming, smiles and blue bottles.