Do you ever dream of that ‘special place;’ you know, visions of water, trees, green grass and beautiful trees? Do you imagine being there with a friend or on your own; maybe with a book and a nice picnic lunch? It’s your place and that is where you go to blow away the concerns of everyday life.
I often discuss this dream with my friends and talk about faraway places and other that are within about two hours drive from home. The other day a good friend suggested we take our dogs somewhere for a swim; this time to a place where we could join them in the water. Our usual place doesn’t quite measure up. Don’t get me wrong: the place where we go nearly every day, Onehunga Bay Reserve, is fantastic for the dogs and it has been instrumental in the formation of recent friendships.
We wracked our brains and then suddenly it hit me. What the heck was I ‘not thinking?’ Less than 300 metres from my home there is a park. It features in my book of short stories, Coastal Yarns.’ The first story, ‘Tuis In The Mist,’ is set in Waikowhai (Faulkner Bay) Bay. There is an upper car park and from there you turn right and an off-leash dog exercise area, with slopping green grass and wonderful trees and lovely view; all leading down to a secluded beach, where at either side of high tide it provides good swimming.
What was I thinking; ignoring this place for seven years?! I made inquiries amongst locals and sure enough; they say it’s great at high tide. I shall now try it out this afternoon with my friend and our dogs. I am really looking forward to seeing what Perdy (alias ‘Spot, in ‘Talk To Me’) and Patch (my mate’s dog) will do when we enter the water with them.
Naturally we are taking a wonderful picnic with us. My friend has baked bacon and egg pie and I have brought some plums, apricots and peaches to complete our little escapade. I shall let you know how things work out. (See the pictures below--- they tell the story)
At high tide this beach and the area above it are perfect to be able to make the claim that it is 'my special place,' and it is only about 300 metres from my house.
POST SCRIPT--On the way home a guy ran in to my car. His daughter said---'The car's alright.' I said---Fu---the car---how's your DAD?" He was OK, thank God!