I am addicted to the salty silkiness of the sea at sunset ….
I have begun to crave the time during my daughter’s swim lesson, which wraps around the hour both before and after dusk. The winds have often died down, and the water is calm. I can go out, swim, then come out for the sunset…or just lie in the water, bobbing with the waves, while the sun goes quietly to sleep. Tonight, the water was especially calm, and the sand below seemingly unmoved. The water didn’t taste as salty. It was as if the ocean had mellowed for the evening, like it too was enjoying pau hana.
I am enjoying swimming again, and it is nights like tonight where I can feel the water ripple along my body as I tilt to take a breath, and the sworls around my feet, like little seaweed hands brushing my ankles. I slow and look around, then lay back into the billowy salty sea, back into the arms of the ocean herself. Transformed into an ocean dweller, a bikini-clad willowy sea plant, floating and swishing, head and chest bobbing as the waves press them up, then let them fall softly down…
The ocean envelops me, supports me, comforts me. These times are truly like returning to the womb, where nothing exists but my sensorium, no thoughts, no life outside the water…. soft, billowy, salty bliss.
And just when you think it can’t get better, that the magic has to end as you stand and feel the weight of your bones, feel the ocean dripping from your hair and body, clinging just enough to remind you of the salty silkiness….you turn around to witness the sun slowly settling in for the night.
The sunsets in Kihei are always amazing, and locals line up alongside the tourists for the nightly worship, for the endless pictures, romantic moments, calm reverie… we gather, either to play, or relax, or escape… and to say adieu to the day, to see everything that happened that day, good, bad, or indifferent, go up in a blaze of peach, orange, yellows, reds….and then quietly slip into the ocean, so that we may start anew the next day.