Hot sand, then fog.

Today’s beach trip kept getting put off, until by the time I got out to the coast it was already afternoon. These flowers had opened sometime in the last week; I don’t remember ever seeing them on the California coast before. The daisy flower looks like something that might have escaped a back yard, but the plant as a whole definitely does not.

However, the Seek app tells me it is redpurple ragwort, Sinecio elegans, which is in the aster family: “Native to southern Africa, it is cultivated as an ornamental plant… It has been known to escape cultivation and become naturalized in areas of appropriate climate.” I guess that’s why it doesn’t look like a typical Pacific coastal plant.

The sand was surprisingly hot on my bare feet at first, a new thing after many months of fall and winter. But then the fog, which had been thin and drifting away, changed its mind, thickened up, and cooled everything off. I didn’t walk fast today, and I didn’t walk in the ruffles at the edge. I sat on a stump to read, behind the labyrinth, with this view:

Then I walked on up the beach a ways and sat to read a little more.

I saw this new sign, “Sensitive Wildlife Area: Do Not Enter,” one of many posted along the rope that surrounds an area not twice as large as what you can see in this picture. The dunes are of course always in flux from the changing winds. It seems odd to guard a relatively tiny spot, and also not to say what agency is forbidding the children to play there. [See more about this in the comments.]

In the car today I finished listening to The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald, which I also read last year sometime. It is one of my favorite books. When I got home I read a lot of The Eucharist, and created a recipe for vegan tapioca pudding using leftover ginger pulp, agave nectar, two sizes of tapioca pearls and mostly almond milk, with a bit of coconut milk, too. It was good!

Mondays seem to be a good day to go somewhere to be alone and quiet, and not try to accomplish too much. The high school class that I teach on Sunday afternoons will end soon and maybe my Sundays won’t be so brain-deadening, but for now, I’m glad for these Mondays and for the beach that is always there, and willing for me to participate in whatever it’s doing, if only by breathing.

7 thoughts on “Hot sand, then fog.

  1. In the hurly-burly of life it is good to find a quiet place away from home. As lovely as home is, there is always something there that requires attending to. I am glad you are enjoying the solitude of the beach.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The turtle nesting possibility occurred to me as well. I like the little plant escapee. It does look out of place. Enjoy your peaceful beach!

    Like

    1. I found an article from just this month about giant sea turtles known to nest on California beaches: “A subset of leatherbacks that hatches on beaches in Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands were migrating 7,000 miles across the Pacific Ocean to the cold waters off the U.S. West Coast, where they gorged on jellyfish before swimming back.”

      I have never heard of them before. I wonder, did someone see them laying eggs in the sand in that area that got roped off? The authorities might want to give as little information as possible to people, so as to keep the secret.

      https://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2021/04/08/scientists-report-decline-in-giant-sea-turtles-sightings-off-west-coast/

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  3. Redpurple ragwort is rather an unattractive name for such a pretty flower.
    Protecting turtle eggs would make sense of that roped off area.

    Like

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