Thursday, March 22, 2018

Sunglow Pier, Daytona Beach Shores, FL

Without a doubt one of the perquisites of living at Ocean Villas on Daytona Beach Shores has been the immediacy of Sunglow Pier.  The moment I saw it last year I was thrilled!  Every favourable recollection I have of a maritime scene has included a pier of almost any description.  Seemingly the human spirit can never get enough of proximity to the sea. Perhaps it's some prehistoric enertia to return to the depths whence we purportedly evolved.  Equally magical for me is the entrance we have from the pool of our condominium building down to the beach.  It is a descent into bliss, specifically a most agreeable boardwalk which skirts the southern end of the property before slanting to the sandy beach below.

So complete is the enchantment of the beach that in spite of my earlier protestations about an aching back and limbs, and promises to avoid the blazing injury of the sun, after a brief lounge by the pool this morning I could no longer resist the siren song.  As I descended from the upper level of the pool to the beach I soon insinuated myself like the shoreline gulls into the the complex of the maritime shore. Because the tide had only just begun to recede the sandy path along the shore was softer and slightly less passable than at low tide.  This presented a small concern to me in light of my persistent balance issues following my recent surgery.  But the warmth of the sun (into which I was walking) and the delight of the sound of the crashing surf were ample reason to take my time and enjoy the scene. When other travellers approached in my direction I fear I maintained my course steadfastly, relying upon the persuasion of an invalid old-fogey status to propel me without interruption.  They either dipped into the thin envelope of the waves or bordered onto the upper reaches of the dry, white bellows of sand.

Though the putative cause of my accident was a bicycle fall (the real reason was that my heart gave out), I am already contemplating a cycling again.  The visit may however have to be delayed at least until we return home to Canada (where I will in any event have my trusty Electra Townie in store) because our Canadian health insurer has made it clear that if I suffer any further lung or rib ailments while in Florida I will have to endure any resulting medical/financial storms on my own account. Considering the last episode cost $289,000 just for the hospital care for the lung and rib problems (not including the physicians or anything subsequently related to the Pacemaker surgery) I am understandably cautious. While I don't for a minute imagine that I will suffer another collapse of my heart, it is nonetheless possible that I might fall from a bike for some other reason.  As such I have resigned during our tenure on the peninsula to seek my matutinal exercise by walking (something frankly I detest).  In spite of this less than enthusiastic disposition I have to say that I relished my slow progress today towards the beach access (which we have calculated from previous outings is exactly 0.4 miles from the condominium).

This particular access marks the commencement of a "vehicle free" area of the beach which continues almost all the way southward along the edge of Wilbur-by-the-Sea to Ponce Inlet (where the traffic is once again permitted for a short distance to the rock pier which is the end of this barrier island).  Not that it matters but it was about at that latter point that I had my bicycle accident on February 10th last.  I can't say that that event was horribly memorable (in fact I have no memory of it at all - I just passed out) but certainly I recall with pleasure the many times I cycled along that route and rejoiced to see the rock pier and adjoining sand dunes.

In fact I confess I've lately been preoccupied with recollections of that appealing sort with some regularity.  In the middle of the night - rather than anguishing or dreaming - I ponder encouraging memories of places we've been together, vivid portraits of journeys and sights.  The thoughts are not confined merely to the many favourable views along the Atlantic Ocean; they include dalliances in Renfrew County and the Ivy Lea Club on the St. Lawrence Seaway.  It is probably safe to say that my absorption is predominantly positive, something frankly I don't persue as a matter of choice but rather as a native inclination. Though I may one day eat my words I prefer to fashion myself as an optimist or at least someone who in the face of unpleasantness can dig himself out with gusto.  In the meantime - before the unfortunate challenge of that particular day - I am obliged to concede that I haven't much if anything about which to complain.  As I have oft repeated, life owes me nothing!

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