Thursday, March 10, 2016

Soft Blue Day

Living on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina (a distinction I presume to arrogate after having resided here for four months with another yet to come) there are two things I do every morning (even before I get out of bed).  First, I check the weather. Second, I check the tide chart. I conduct those enquiries by grabbing my iPhone on the bedside table and tuning into the weather App and the internet. The forecast this morning wasn't alluring - a cloudy day was predicted. That meant I didn't bother to check the tide chart.  I perform this preliminary investigation every morning not only because it directs what I shall do during the day (rain for example is a dampening factor) but also because it tells me whether I may linger under the duvet with impunity.  If a sunny day is foreseeable it burns me up to imagine missing even a moment of sunshine and blue sky.

Anyway in spite of today's outlook for cloudy skies, the good news was that the expected temperature was over 70℉.   Even if I weren't motivated by the prospect of a sunny bike ride on the beach, the thought of sipping coffee while savouring a warm breeze off the Sound was irresistible.

I eased myself into the complications of the day by initiating a cathartic laundry cycle. While my vacation wardrobe is quite unimaginative and highly repetitive (basically khaki shorts and bagging Polo shirt) it nonetheless delights me to wear fresh clothing howsoever modest every day, top to bottom.  I actually have two regular daily outfits, one for bicycling, the other for motoring (which embraces dining out, grocery shopping, hairdresser, dentist, etc.).  Both ensembles are essentially the same, though the athletic one is made of synthetic material, the other of cotton. Even if I have merely touched one article of either of those costumes, they are destined to the wash.  Purification is such a gratifying pleasure and so easily afforded (the more so since we had the estate agent arrange to have the dryer outlet cleaned).

After setting that cleaning business in motion I then engaged the mechanics of my routine breakfast. This regime has acquired the elevation of ceremony. Like my clothing (and perhaps like everything else about me) it is highly routine and equally lacklustre.  Nonetheless it gets me where I want to go - literally!

When the morning sky began to reveal increasing blue, it wasn't long before I resolved to go for my bike ride on the beach.  We are currently in a pattern of tides which invites cycling on the beach midday. The tides chart does of course constantly change.  When one is in the rhythm which affords midday or afternoon cycling, it stimulates the activity accordingly.  This is especially so when the weather is clear and warm.

What distinguished the day today was its softness.  The wind was negligible.  The temperature was warm enough to impart a haze at the seashore, particularly noticeable from a distance. The sand on the beach was dry (not always the case).  It should not of course be any surprise that the mollification of the weather has a corresponding effect upon one's temperament and sensibilities generally. While I grant that a breath of fresh air is invigorating, I equally confess that a warm breeze and the glow of sunshine on one's face is impossible to dispute. Knowing that I was exercising my heart helped as well.

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