Thursday, July 28, 2011

21. Vacation

Part 21 of the 100 Themes Challenge
(And no, I don't plan on doing the words in order.)

Emery took a deep breath of the evening air and just savored it. It wasn't the best tasting air in the world, in fact, a lot of people probably hated it. Emery, however, couldn't get enough of the salty air that you could only find at the ocean. A light breeze wafted the air right towards her and Emery inhaled deeply again as she looked over the waves that were crashing in on the shore. The sun was almost ready to set, and though clouds blocked the horizon so Emery wouldn't be able to watch the sun set directly on the ocean, it was still a beautiful sight, one that she could never get enough of.

Unfortunately, this was the last day of her week long trip. Tomorrow morning, she would pack up and head back home, where she was at least five hundred miles from any sort of ocean.

Turning her back to the ocean, Emery entered her hotel room and glanced around. The room was, as was typical for her, a mess. Even having a maid come in every day and tidy up made no real difference.

Resigned to having to pick up the mess so that she could leave, Emery started on the work. Every so often, she glanced back through the sliding glass doors to look at the ocean and the sun that was setting through the clouds above it. Finally, Emery couldn't resist any further. She dropped the clothing she had been gathering onto a heap on the bed and went to the front door. Slipping on her flip flops, she left her hotel room and walked down through the hallways to the back entrance. Walking across the grass of the backyard, Emery finally made it to the path that led directly down onto the beach.

The day was chilly, so not many people were on the beach. Emery liked it better that way. At the top of the staircase leading down into the sand, Emery kicked off her shoes and left them sitting there, trusting that nobody would be along to steal them while she was down at the beach.

The sand was still warm and Emery dug her feet into it for a moment before she continued walking toward the ocean. The water was at low tide at the moment, so it was a long way off.

Emery simply enjoyed the walk through the sand and was soon as the water's edge. The cold water tickled her feet as it gurgled up and then swept back down to join the whole. She turned her face to the sky to watch the sun disappear behind the clouds. Her feet sunk into the sand up to her ankles, but she didn't attempt to stop it from happening.

The sun finally was gone and the sky because to lose its blue hue. Still, Emery stood and let the water sweep over her feet. The rhythm of it soothed her and she closed her eyes and simply listened.

Emery was reminded of a pebble she had picked up earlier in the week. It was perfectly smooth, the type of smooth that can only be made by machines polishing a rock, or by it being beaten down by the forces of nature. The constant beating of the ocean on this rock made it smooth and refined, and Emery felt like the ocean did that to her as well. Every time she came here, she felt like she left a changed person. It was good to get away from the world for a while. Her life was stressful and visiting the ocean was like an oasis in the middle of the scorching desert for her.

Opening her eyes again, Emery stared into the darkening waters and sighed. She wouldn't be able to stay much longer. She had no light with her and the beach wasn't always safe at night.

Heading away from the water seemed so much harder than walking to it. The sand was difficult to trudge through and Emery dragged her feet. Already, the heat was fading from the sand. The sand stuck to her wet feet and made her uncomfortable. Finally, she reached the stairs and climbed them to the top. She slipped on her flip flops, which hadn't been stolen, and walked to the nearby water spout to wash the sand off her feet before she entered the hotel.

It was almost symbolic, Emery mused as she sprayed the water over her legs and feet. When she first went down to the water, she loved every part of it. Leaving, she didn't like it. Her trip was the same way. She would definitely miss the beach while she was back at home, but she was glad to be leaving at the same time. She missed home.

The beach was her solace, and she came here to be alone, but she wouldn't be able to stand being here all the time.

Emery finished up and went back into the hotel. Entering her room, she looked out over the darkened beach and ocean and murmured a fond farewell. She would be leaving before the sun rose the following morning.