Operation Oysterhood: 19 August

OYSTERHOOD is reclusiveness or solitude, or an overwhelming desire to stay at home.

— @HaggardHawks

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I did something really stupid today (was lucky, but could have gotten badly hurt or even drowned, but I am okay, more or less, although I am not sure that I will be able to move my right arm by tomorrow, once the shock wears off and my injuries bring me – not to my knees, but – my elbow; let’s just say that my right arm is not in the best of shapes as I try to type tonight …).

So, the following will be more pictures than coherent storytelling. Shock, painkillers, bubbly are not the best combination for sense-making.

Morning walk in the inter-tidal zone and on the dunes. Highlights: limpets grazing (I love limpets – they are fascinating creatures), an octopus, plants’ wind-dancing patterns.

Horrible anti-highlight: PLASTIC. Washed up from the ocean. During our one-and-a-half-hour walk, we managed to collect a few kilograms of plastic waste on the beach. Utter despair is what one feels seeing this.

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Breakfast was another Lekkerwater treat. The food here is simply delicious.

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We rested a bit after breakfast, but continued watching whales from our bed. Also sighted today: mousebirds and dolphins.

The weather made a complete turnaround today: sunshine, hardly any wind, pleasant temperatures. I did very little work today, but did finish the next Harry Bosch novel (another good one).

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All the other guests left after the morning walk today and we have had the place to ourselves for the rest of the day.

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Lekkerwater Library, a little library with a view, now including Karavan Press titles.

After a light lunch and some rest, it was time for an afternoon fynbos walk. Billy once again lent me his macro lens, so that I could have some fun in the veld. Loved it.

Then, it was time for a sunshine hot-tub treat of note. And I would just like to explain that I was still completely sober when I had my stupid accident.

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All of this loveliness was waiting while I, after first getting into the hot water and feeling completely overheated after a few minutes, ran down to the sea and meant to just splash around in the shallows when Ms Ocean decided she had other plans. Let’s just say that I am very pleased that it was my arm, and not my head or my face, that hit the rocks when I tumbled and completely lost control over what happened to me when a huge WAVE crashed into me without any warning.

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The scene of the meeting between the rock and my unprepared self.

Bubbly, hot water and the distraction of mosquitoes allowed me to cope with the pain of the bruises and scratches after the too close encounter with the rock. Despite a long shower, I still have a lot of sand EVERYWHERE, especially my hair. And I know that by tomorrow, I will probably not be able to move my right arm. C’est la vie.

But, despite everything, there was a moment in the water – before the wave nearly killed me – when I felt free, careless and happy. (I only felt stupid afterwards.)

Now, as always, I feel humbled by the sea.

Be kind. Wear a mask. Support local.

“Physical distancing remains one of the key strategies to curb this pandemic.”

— NICD

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