Sunday, August 31, 2008


the vivid colors of the indian ocean

It's not always easy being essentially alone in a city full of strangers. Being away from your usual support group makes it necessary for you to find ways to cope with the stresses that shake your world and the sporadic loneliness that comes with knowing that you are very much on your own. Some people get their fix from some retail therapy, others from comfort food. Some escape reality by watching a movie or indulging in a good book for a few hours.

Since I've been here, I've done a little bit of all of the above. But when things go really, really wrong and my mood can't get any lower, what else can a forsworn beach addict like me do but seek the water?

I've always loved the water. There is something about it that has always drawn me. Just being near the water is, for me, a major pick me up. There are some pseudo-scientific theories that say that this may have something to do with negative ions generated by the water splashing on the ground - who knows how true that is? Bottom-line is that I simply love the sound of the waves crashing on the shore, the brisk breeze coming over the water, the horizon that stretches out to forever and hints of possibility.

swan river foreshore in burswood park

One major upside of being in Perth is that it is so easy for me to tap into this unconventional, life-giving idiosyncrasy even if I don't actually live in a suburb anywhere close to the water.

I can hop on a train and be on the Swan River foreshore in a matter of minutes. In a little over an hour by public transport, I can be on any point of the magnificent Sunset Coast, a pristine, raw-sugar sand beach that stretches for miles and miles in either direction as far as the eye can see.

the sunset coast towards south to freo as seen from scarborough beach

When I am by the water, for that space of time, life's complications fall away. Loneliness gives way to a peaceful kind of solitude. It's hard to stay stirred up in the face of something so much larger than myself, ever-constant and ever-changing at the same time. After watching the rhythm of life played out on the water for endless hours, my beauty-loving soul is recharged - and the life in this city of strangers is just that more bearable.

Fate couldn't have chosen a better place for me to be while I am adjusting to life away from home than this beautiful Australian coastal city on the water.

(all photos are taken by me using a Lumix point-and-shoot camera.)


Manggy said...

Ah, I imagine that during your lowest moments in PGH, you headed straight to Manila Bay? :P~~~
Kidding. Though I did jog around that area for a time. I love how the Australians are very attuned to the environment. They can really take advantage of their coastline in a way that we don't.

P.S. I hope you are beginning to feel better and in "the groove!"

dr_clairebear said...

in PGH, my callroom rants were usually enough to take me out of my funk. when i was really distressed, i'd drag a couple of batchmates or friends and we'd drive up to tagaytay and look out on taal lake as we contemplated the meaning of life over coffee. :)

i used to jog along manila bay every now and then, and i would be happy for a fleeting moment until the smell comes wafting over the sea breeze... hehehe.

ness said...

Beautiful shots as ever, Clairebear, even with your point and shoot your pics come out breathtaking. must be the eye behind the lens...

MerryCherry, MD said...

Wow, inggit Doc. I'm a water baby too. :)

Great shots.

Ann said...

Beautiful entry, beautiful pics.

I suddenly have the urge to go to Tagaytay.

dr_clairebear said...

@everyone: thanks for the compliments on the photos! i guess desolation and comfort serve as inspiration. :) i really want to learn photography more formally... one of these days! :))

Panaderos said...

Beautiful pictures. I've done the tag. :)

Wailana Yoga said...

Being by the ocean always makes me feel so peaceful and safe.
Beautiful pictures, thanks for sharing.