We only had one sunny day of the four but we spent it all outside, on the marshes, at the beach, meandering, sitting in the dunes looking out to sea.
This was the view on Bank Holiday Monday, everyone seems to plop themselves down on the first stretch of sand nearest the carpark leaving the rest of it looking like the majestic wilderness that it is. I have spent my life breathing in this view and every time it is a perspective bringer. It is the place I feel most free I think.
Behind these north Norfolk beaches are pine woods, dappled, sandy-floored and full of that amazing piney smell when the sun shines.
It is suffused with happy childhood memories, playing in the sand, paddling, swimming with seals and having a bag of salt and vinegar crisps from the old lifeboat house on The Point, an island we boat out to (in an ancient wonky dingy!), just off the coast - you can see the dark blue Lifeboat house still, although no crisps now, a tiny maritime museum of sorts.
But the salty freshness of the air, the screeching gulls, distant clinking of mast riggings and the endless skies bring an instant bolt of happiness in the here and now, nostalgia welcome but not required.
When the marshes are knee deep mud as they are at the moment, there is a lovely walk along the raised marsh dykes - looking across the marshes and out to sea one way,
with a snaking network of creeks in the foreground,
and fens and farmland behind, criss crossed with footpaths, all framed by the fiery yellow blooms of the gorse bushes.
|I have always thought this cottage has the most amazing location overlooking the fen and farmland in one direction and the marshes and sea on the other.|
Bliss. And this landscape always suprises me with the gift of some inspiration for my jewellery. Little treasures from the beach have already inspired my coastal collection - little sea-tumbled shells and pebbles
jewellery that speak of the colours of the sand and sea,
but this time it was something less tangible perhaps but intriguing still to me - the way that the dunes, the little shards of broken shells and the shifting shoreline speak so much of erosion and attrition, that those timeless movements of natural forces create so much beauty as well as destruction. Often this inextricably part of what creates beauty in a landscape and a strong sense of place. I am thinking about the possibilities of those attributes in my designs, maybe rings and pendants with little areas of erosion, little marks of texture contrasted with smooth surfaces and lines.....watch this space! I was also intrigued by the shadows and forms of the dune grass and will ponder those also at my jewellery bench.
All this and my parents' sweet cottage to come home to - very lucky.