The unvoiced thoughts and ideas of a septegenarian.


Yet another fantasy.     If  you’ve been following this blog, you’ve read The Loon and The Peacock.  Here’s The Sandpiper.  Reading it again causes  nostalgia and wishful thinking to rear their heads.


            Now, nearly three decades later, I sometimes fantasize about what it would have been like to have married him. Then, as a young man, he was a bit of a maverick. He once picked me up for a dance, dressed in a tuxedo – but barefoot. One weekend he whisked me off to a deserted shack on a bayou when I didn’t even know what a bayou was. Skillfully he poled a skiff across it, delighting in my ignorance, and thoughtfully described the surroundings in his soft, southern drawl. We ate spaghetti with crayfish for breakfast.

Tall and lanky with sparkling blue eyes and copper-colored hair, his face wears a smile always. He is warm, loving, and more than generous. Even then I saw him in later life as a barefoot beachcomber and that is how we live now.

A rickety wooden cottage sits about 100 yards back from the shoreline. It contains only the essentials and a fine stereo system. Our house is full of music and laugher. We cook on an open stone fireplace and work at a picnic table on the front porch. The writing we do requires  minimal time and provides enough income for food and shelter. We collaborate on the kind of pictorial stories found in National Geographic.

The sea is our home. We spend hours walking the beach, gathering shells, making love in the surf. We sail to nearby islands for picnics, sometimes camping overnight. We snorkel and scuba and are expert surfers. We have accumulated an extensive nautical library and spend evenings in the soft glow of a flickering gas lantern studying the breeding habits of the manatee, reading aloud Kon-Tiki or sharing the adventures of Jacques Cousteau. We dream of someday being able to sail throughout the South Pacific.


We build bonfires on the sand and occasionally invite neighbors to share a fish boil and a sing-along. He plays both a guitar and a flute. Their melodies blend into the sound of the waves kissing the shore and the tide tumbling back to the sea as we all nestle in the sand around the dying embers munching on sticky, toasted,  marshmallows and sipping the wine a neighbor was kind enough to contribute. Another neighbor takes delight in pointing out stars and constellations as they come into view.

He frequently greets the morning sun with his flute and its soft, lilting tune is the first thing I hear as the sun begins to sift through my window. Together we sit on the sand and bid good night to the sun to the tune of his strumming guitar. The children of the beach have chosen him as their Pied Piper. His music calls to them. They giggle and tumble and build sand castles all around us. We share their joy, laugh, and sing with them.

We have few cares on this idyllic beach. We neither need nor want anything. Each of us, to the other, is enough. Casual touching, loving hugs, laughing eye contact and warm embraces are the ingredients of our daily lives. There is tenderness and gentleness, concern and consideration. We speak softly to each other just as the sea whispers to the sand on a calm sunny day. And we make love passionately just as the waves thunder against the shore in a storm.

The depth of this relationship exists in none of my other fantasies. It is, perhaps, what might have been.



Challenge.  Describe and share your concept of ideal living c icumstances.


Julie Rose