Sunday, June 15, 2008

no grafitti, depth, clouds
















Although the occasional squiggle and twirl of graffiti has appeared on the panels of the beach huts used by the town hall for beach maintenance, none seems to have disfigured the white walls of Sitges. Perhaps it is because of this magisterial prohibition in Catalan. Identical blue and white porcelain plaques are fixed to walls throughout the town.

When, as a nipper, I first learnt to swim, my mother would stand at the edge of the sea and tell me not to go out of my depth. It is partly for the pleasure of ignoring her orders and partly for the equal pleasure of leaving the shore as far behind as possible, that I have always enjoyed being out of my depth. It is a state, which come to think of it, I have been in for the best part of my life. Now, however, as Heidi, following her hip operation, swims parallel to the beach, I find myself doing the same.

From the balcony, this one wet day of our holiday, I watch a long line of low, black clouds move slowly, like a freight train, from left to right above the sea and against a background of higher grey cloud.
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3 comments:

Lucy said...

Lovely to catch up with you holiday postings, I was hoping we'd see the collared dove!

tristan said...

not drowning but waving, then ?

Plutarch said...

We'll be back to real time soon, but the memories and notes are still real enough. A sad sequal to the collared dove story. When I went to swim one morning a similar dove or perhaps the same one had fallen off its perch as they say and was floating on its back in the pool. I wondered at the time of the visit whether the bird's lack of shyness was due to youth or old age. If it was the same dove, I think it must have been old age.

The dove poor thing was neither drowning nor waving, but neverthess in a strange way looked remarkably comfortable. A histrionic school friend of mine used to boast that Stevie Smith was his father's first mistress.