Sunbeams, Shoreham Beach

Sunbeams, Shoreham Beach, West Sussex – September 2020

A photograph from the end of last summer. It is a bit “decorative” or new age book cover’ish (“The Wisdom of Pebbles”) – but I still quite like it.

And I took it with the simplest camera I own. There is probably a lesson in there somewhere.

The Shard, London

The Shard, London 2020

Although I am scared of heights, I like going up tall buildings. Whenever I visit a new city, I’ll search for a tall building to look at it from.

But I’ve never been up The Shard. So I couldn’t say whether it was worth the entry fee. In a slightly connected way, I can recommend St Paul’s Cathedral – there is a whole post I could do about that! As an aside, my favourite view of London is from Parliament Hill.

It feels a bit poignent, because I took this early last year before the lockdown.

Empty Beach, Shoreham-by-Sea

Empty Beach, Shoreham Beach, West Sussex – May 2021

“I must go down to the sea again, to the lonely sea and sky…”

Sorry, I thought I would start with a bit of John Masefield. 🙂

This photo is only a couple of weeks old, but the now weather has shifted from “sort-of-summer” to “definitely summer”. So it is long gone (although it isn’t).

When I lived here 40 years ago, I was always disappointed that the sea looked green rather than the blue you see in films. And I wished the shingle was sand. But now, I’m glad that it isn’t: the green is rather pleasing and the waves hiss when they strike the pebbles!

View From Gurney Drive, Penang

View of Straits Quay from Gurney Drive, Penang – January 2016

Years ago, I lived in Penang. On a Wednesday afternoon after work, I used to walk from Island Plaza into George Town – where I would usually have my dinner. At the time, I believed that this was a fair way, but looking back, I can see it was only a few miles. I used to love this view across the bay to Straites Quay and on this occasion, I think the clouds look quite impressive. On other occasions, there were huge storm clouds which warned of bad weather ahead.

Straits Quay, Northam Beach, Penang – August 2013

I know that this view has gone now – the beach has been drained and the land reclaimed for building. One day, I hope to see what it is like now.

Evening Sky, Horsham

Evening Sky, Horsham, West Sussex August 2020

Time passes. This photo is from a test roll I did on a (new to me) camera. I think it was mid-evening when I took it and as you can see, the Sun is setting. As I’m writing this, it is a similar time of day – but it is completely dark outside (and has been for a couple of hours). I am almost 50 years old, I know the science, but the seasons still amaze me.

I love the delicate range of colours and the whispy white clouds. So it is a “shapes” photo rather than a “things” photo.

I remember as I was walking around the park, I was thinking, that if we could get everything back to normal by the end of the year – then all the inconvienience would have been worth it. But – things aren’t back to normal!

Thanksgiving, Shoreham Beach

Swimmers, Shoreham Beach November 2020

I was going to write about life on the beach – but then I noticed the date – and decided that I would write about Thanksgiving instead.

In the UK we tend to slowly take on things from the US – liablity lawyers, Adam Sandler – all the good stuff. But I do think we should get the British Museum to borrow Thanksgiving from the US and forget to return it – or take molds from it so we can cast our own.

I think in the UK we do lots of things well, but if we had this holiday, it would help us to recognise them too and then maybe when New Year’s Day comes around we wouldn’t feel quite so down.

In a moment I will go for a late night walk and think about things I should be grateful for – what would you choose?

More from Shoreham Beach

Kite Surfing Seascape, Shoreham Beach, West Sussex October 2020
Kite Surfer, Shoreham Beach, West Sussex October 2020
Windsurfer, Shoreham Beach, West Sussex October 2020

I keep coming back to Shoreham Beach. I suspect, it is because haven’t been to the seaside in such a long time. Or it could be because I like drinking warm coffee while I get blasted by on shore gales. I don’t know.

While I was taking these, another photographer was doing things properly with a long lens on a tripod. The guys on the windsurfers seemed to know what they were doing, so I’m wondering if I gate crashed a photo shoot! In which case, I thank them for their generosity.

Almost Monochrome, Shoreham Beach, West Sussex October 2020

Yachts, Shoreham Beach

Yachts, Shoreham Beach September 2020

After 6 months of staying at home, I have started exploring further afield. In this case, about 20 miles away – so not that far! I used to live in Shoreham-by-Sea 40 years ago and whenever I go back I am reminded of what it was like as a child. The church at the end of my road, remains pretty much as I remember it, but the whole place looks neater than I remember it, perhaps everywhere was a bit scruffier in the 1970s.

The weather in the morning has turned much cooler in the morning, so I can definitely tell that Autumn is coming. But for now the outdoor cafes are open, people are still going for morning swims in the sea, and as you can see, people are sailing!

Two Trees, West Sussex

Two Trees, West Sussex June 2020

I think I have missed my morning walk once during lockdown. Yesterday, it was quite cool and misty early on – but by the time I went out for my walk, the Sun was up and throwing long, dark shadows. And there is a contrast with the morning mist, which is slowly being burned off.