Drakes Bay, Marin County, California
One of my favorite beaches in Northern California
There is a little independent bookstore in Point Reyes, California that Scott and I loved to go to. Scott wasn't a big book reader, he loved music, and most of his time was spent finding new music, sharing it with me, and making playlists for us, and for friends and family.
When we went to the bookstore, he searched for books, mostly for something he thought I would like. I get lost in a good bookstore. Time stops. First, I go to the non-fiction section to see if there is anything of interest, I love personal essays. One of my favorite authors is Pam Houston. Her books don't come out often, but when they do I am the first to grab one. Searching for something good to read, I run my fingers over the covers, feeling the book, looking at the picture on the front cover, reading the blurb at the back of the book, and quotations of thoughts from established writers about the book. Sometimes, it takes me several turns around the bookstore before I make my purchase.
Books are the one item I buy that I take my time with. I don't shop much, almost everything else I purchase is simple, tossed into the cart, and paid for as expedient as possible. Clothes included. When I met Scott he started picking out my clothes most of the time, and when he did, I actually dressed well. Most of the time, I just threw on what was comfortable not really caring anymore about any sense of fashion. I guess I did have a kind of fashion, "horse clothes", clothes meant for the barn which I ended up wearing for everything else.
After, going to the bookstore, and picking up a coffee for myself, Scott would always head for the beach. One of my favorite beaches in Marin County, California across from the San Francisco Bay is Drakes Bay. The first time Scott took me there and the first time I think he saw it, was an unusual day. Driving through Point Reyes, we turned into a large parking lot, parking up front near the light cinnamon colored sand, I notice little crowds of people sprinkled around. In the middle of the circle of people were enormous knobbly brown globs of what looked like seal flesh but bumpier.
We got out the van, locked it, and headed over to see what was going on. Getting closer, the globs turned into Elephant Seals. At least ten large males spaced at least twenty feet away from each other napping and snoring away. I was so excited, I felt like I was twelve years old again. Scott looked at me and smiled. "you are so cute".
We got as close as we could, pretty close, not too close. The Ranger watching over the Elephant Seals informed us, that they don't care for people. He continued, "this a rare occurrence, as far as we know, they have never landed on this beach before. They usually go to another beach further away."
We watched the seals rumble, when one would look at us with one eye and than tuck himself back to sleep, I would share my delight with Scott, how happy I was to really get to see this, to see elephant seals so close. Scott would smile again at me. He always remained calm, taking it all in.
The Ranger continued "The females and pups are on their way. They should be here in a day or two. The males battle it out for territory, than they spread out creating a certain amount of distance between each other, and take a nap. You never know when they are going to wake up and go after each other again."
Scott and I stayed with the seals watching them nap for quite awhile. Then, we headed for the water, walking the beach holding hands, our bare feet feeling the cool saltwater, as we watched the seagulls fly and the people walk in the sand.