I enjoyed a perfect Saturday on my day off. It began early on a cold winter’s morning as the sun came up. Donning cycling gear, then extra layers for warmth, we set out into the chilly morning. A group of us cycled our regular route past paddocks blanketed with fog. We shared a BBQ breakfast to celebrate a friend’s 60th birthday. By this time the sun was up but providing no warmth as we shivered and chatted grasping our warm drinks.
Later my husband bought some fishing gear at a local shop. We climbed aboard some big cruising motor boats in the display room dreaming of escape. Then we went for a coffee and a stroll along Mornington pier. People were enjoying the cold sunny day, fishing, learning scuba diving, walking their dogs, and looking at some dolphins swim by through the flat silvery waters of the bay.
After lunch we went to a surf beach further down the Peninsula. While my husband fished for salmon, I took photos, wrote, read, and still tried in vain to soak some warmth from the cold sun. Only a few other people braved the beach and the sea was too calm for surfers. The quiet was intermittently punctuated by the roar of the waves as they broke directly onto the sand.
I walked to the rocky headland following some tiny plovers as they trotted along the wet sand looking for food morsels as the waves retreated. I thought about being unconnected from the internet. I thought about the freedom and liberty I take for granted as my birthright. My awareness of world events brought to my consciousness by the electronic media. It is depressing to hear about recent events in Iran and the sudden death of Michael Jackson, melting ice caps, the financial recession, swine flu, and more world events. Twitter effectively plugs us into the conversation, but how much can we bear?
My Saturday was peaceful, glorious, in the world, active, and so much more. Who needs drugs to get high when life is so good? And I wonder why anyone would voluntarily enslave themselves to ridiculous doctrines decreed by others. I guess that’s what the people of Iran are fighting for. I pondered these things as the fog crept slowly towards the land from the sea.
As the sun sank towards the west I noticed some sprays of water in the distance. I thought it was probably birds diving for fish. But as I continued to watch I realised it was a group of whales spouting water as they surfaced. They swam in our direction and passed by about one kilometre from the beach. Their huge dark bodies cresting out of the water and occasionally a large fin or a tale could be seen momentarily. If I had been at home with my eyes glued to a screen I would have missed this rare and awesome sight.
Later at home we cooked a curry for dinner – no fish. We watched Before the Game and then a game of AFL football on TV. This was an enjoyable and perfect way to spend a Saturday in winter away from work, computers, traffic, and worry.