I’ve been away. Two weeks vacation. Away from work. Away from routine. Away from sentences more than three words long.

Monday morning is on the horizon and frankly it’s blocking my sun, so let’s pretend it’s something else: a UFO, a ginormous green apple martini, or a Thursday before a long weekend. Ah, that’s more like it.

Actually, I feel invigorated. I’m eager to pick up the pen. Pray tell, where is my inkwell and puffy shirt?

So what did I do these last 14 days to feel so inspired? Not a lot. In fact, I strayed no further than my childhood home of Badger’s Quay.

You don’t have to go far to find inspiration. But everybody knows that. I just thought I’d say it again because it’s the perfect prelude to these photos taken a few days ago at Cape Island, Bonavista Bay, just a shell’s throw from the Combden homestead.

One for the logbook. Because we’re on a log.
If a big wave hits now, he’s duned.

My grandmother walked on this sand, and her mother, and hers. Maybe dear old nan lost an earring here, or a nickel, or her innocence. 😉 At one time, nobody at all walked on this sand because nobody knew it was there, save the natives perhaps. Today, it is deserted once again and has been for 70 years or more; everyone packed up and moved to the mainland for better services. Hey, there’s a decent beach in Cape Freels too, so it’s not all bad.

The Random Passage Walking Trail takes you to Cape Island now. (Yes, Bernice Morgan’s famous book was set here – not New Bonaventure; that’s just where the miniseries was filmed, dum-dum.) The trail draws visitors, but it’s far from crowded. In fact, when we were there we felt like the only living creatures in the world, save these squishy beach bums…

You see the jellyfish but do you see the butterfly?

…and the old guy on the quad in the distance who looked kind of squishy too.

Where else on earth can you find such almost-perfect peace without spending little more than a tank of gas?

Reality Injection: Let’s face it, there is rarely any “peace” with a toddler. Right before we left the Cape, Max smashed our peace to pieces by taking a colossal dump in his shorts. I had to change him in the backseat while he did the worm. He had just run the length of the beach ten times over and now I expected him to lie still? Dream on, dreamer. So, while the morning was glorious, it ended with me shouting threats like, “Max, if you don’t stop squirming we’re going to leave you here to walk home.” Hey, grandfather Stagg did it.

Growing up, I rarely visited this beach. I was too busy counting my quarters for Splash ‘n Putt or the annual trip to the majestic Avalon Mall.

I did visit the nearby beaches of Windmill Bight pretty regularly, however. Today, that beach of my childhood is no more. Hurricane Igor has rendered the white sandy shore a heap of boulders. That beautiful beach took millions of years to form, and just one stormy day to destroy.

We often don’t see the beauty right in front of us, especially when we’re young and stupid, always looking for something bigger and better and different. The soil from which we sprouted couldn’t possibly be… awesome? But it’s true; we see it in the eyes of the urban traveller all the time. Don’t you see it?, their twinkling eyes beseech us. Don’t you see what you have here?

Thankfully, I’ve grown up and my vision has improved.

Walk short and carry a big stick.
Loggin’ lots of love.
An ad for NL tourism or the Montreal Canadiens?
Run, into the forest, run!