Coastal Holiday Season

Sedgefield has been under siege since the beginning of December and there is no sign of a let up. The town goes from a population of 6000 to 50 000 overnight – and those 44 000 want to shop, and eat, and drive, and swim. . . .

The view from my desk is usually of a lone fisherman and a seagull or two, now there’s so much to look at I’m not getting any work done at all.

We’re in the midst of a heat wave and everyone wants a patch of sand and access to the icy sea. The cue at the beach front ice cream seller never seems to diminish, and the cars stream past our house until well after sunset. We sit on the deck, with a glass of cold white wine, and watch them trundle by. For some reason it just seems interesting.

Gavin pretends not to notice the nubile parade of bikini-clad girls moving in packs to the sea. And of course, it goes without saying that I never notice the young surfers with washboard stomachs.

In a couple of weeks it will all be over for another year, bread won’t be sold out before 10am and we’ll be able to buy toothpaste again. I’m looking forward to peace descending, but I know I’ll miss the endless buzz of holiday activity.

Hard to believe, but for 10 months of the year this beach is virtually unoccupied.

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4 Responses to “Coastal Holiday Season”


  1. 1 shoreacres January 5, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    It IS interesting, that deck-sitting while you watch the world go by. It’s what we used to do all the time when I was growing up – porch sitting. And then, when I started cruising, the same dynamic showed up in a different setting. The amusement was to drop anchor in a lovely cove, pour a glass of wine and sit around, watching the late-comers try to anchor.

    I live on the edge of the Kemah Boardwalk – a newly developed amusement area (mostly shops and restaurants) on the channel leading to Galveston Bay. One of the survival skills that separates a local from a tourist is the ability to find your way around without getting caught in the traffic. Well, that and knowing which restaurants to avoid!

    Enjoy the sights and the infusion of cash they represent! Oh – and how is the water supply holding out? Don’t I remember that was a question when the new wells were put in?

    • 2 Jeannine January 7, 2011 at 5:40 am

      Yip Linda, people watching, there’s really nothing like it.

      I checked out the Kemah Boardwalk, looks like it’s a blast, was wondering how often you go on the carousel? 😉 I can imagine that navigating your way around tourists is a vital skill!

      Our water has held up well, mostly because we’ve had a lot of rain lately. I’m really hoping this signals the end of the two year drought, but we still have a long, hot summer to go.

  2. 3 ian in hamburg January 6, 2011 at 5:48 am

    I remember that coastline in July. We thought the weather was wonderful at 15 degrees, but like you say, the beaches were so empty. At 20 in Cape Town they strolled along the shore, but didn’t sunbathe.

    • 4 Jeannine January 7, 2011 at 5:44 am

      Ya Ian, temperature is relative, especially after the icy winter you guys have experienced.

      The Cape is in the midst of a heat wave, Cape Town is hitting the late 30s C every day – that’s really the only temperature at which you’d catch me swimming in that freezing sea.

      Luckily our sea on the Garden Route is warmer, still cold enough to take your breath away though!


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