My mother and I walked along Beadnell Bay towards the nesting turns. The tide was in and the light from the falling sun was gorgeous. The shore breeze was fairly strong and the waves were beating against the shore, roiling with the power from the winds. There was a haze on the water from the crashing waves that glowed in the dying embers of the sun. Black headed gulls patrolled the shoreline, very so often bobbing off as a wave overtook them. Then the noise of the terns cut through the roar of the waves as we approached the nesting area. A warden patrolled his little kingdom. My mum walked back over the dunes, while I watched the parent Arctic terns continuously bringing along little offerings of glistening fish for their chicks. The industry and effort was amazing and how they find their chicks in the cacophony is unbelievable. A group of terns chased away a heron that had got too close.
I turned and walked back along the beach.
The next morning was really windy and the waves were violently crashing on the shore. Sophie and I walked south to Football Hole Cove where I had wanted to swim. The waves were far too big, concentrated into the smaller bay. We paddled in the waves and felt the strong undercurrent trying to pull us out to sea. We walked back along the shore, skirting round the dead seal that was giving off a strongly putrid odour.
I felt refreshed and pleased to have rediscovered this coastline, where I spent many a happy (if cold) holiday when much, much younger.