This is where the beach ends, the sea wall begins, and carries on around Curry’s Point to end at a ramp to the causeway across to St. Mary’s (Bates) Island.
The lower steps from the beach are hidden under seaweed, my concerns last night unfounded. There seems to be more seaweed this morning, but perhaps it’s only piled higher against the sea wall, stacked up by the early morning tide.
A poodle, following it’s owner, launches itself from the lower step onto the seaweed. Rolling on its back, this action is repeated several times before it responds to calls from its owner.
The beach is busy with dog walkers, people strolling, but mainly dog walkers. I can’t imagine a time, from first light until after sunset when there wouldn’t be dogs and their humans on this beach. It’s a mild sunny morning and the tide is out. Seems reason enough to walk on a sandy beach.
We usually collect seaweed together but today it’s just me, and I collected six large garden sacks, mainly the finer, feathery algae; Green Hairweed, Hen Pen, Maiden Hair, and Bootlace Weed, were among the handfuls I stuffed into bin bags. And there was Oarweed too, the holdfasts will be cut up and go into the compost bins.
People are often curious about what we’re doing; is it edible, “Is that your dinner?” And when they’re told it’s for the allotment, how do we wash it? We don’t. Rain and early spring temperatures will sort the algae out. But not beyond, we made that mistake once. Mulched our potatoes one year and the seaweed dried to a solid, brittle crust, under which the potatoes tried to grow.
The tides turned, gently edging up the beach, making its way around and over rocks. Red shank and Oyster Catcher feed among the rock pools. Sanderling scurry along the water edge, drilling into sand, moving on. Something disturbs them, they’re in the air shimmering, turning, returning to where they were feeding. Busy again they suddenly take fright, flight and return. And yet, I can walk to within a few metres of where they’re feeding and not disturb them.
Tomorrow we’ll start to move the Apple trees.