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Photo Story: Beaching Afternoon

"I wanted to capture the warmth, the vibrant colour of the grasses and that brilliant blue sky in my photos...just the general warm, relaxed feeling of a summer's day on a quiet corner of the beach."

You've probably already heard me saying how much I love the beaches and dunes of The Hague in my previous posts and on my website, but what's the harm in saying it again? 😀 With summer beginning to show itself, I took a walk back down to the beach in Scheveningen again with my camera to enjoy the sunshine, fresh air and socially-distanced time outside!

Walking through the harbour on my usual route, the sea and promenade appear in front of me after a short walk up a hill. Instead of turning right to follow the promenade towards the pier, I went left towards a quieter area where fewer people gather.

At this end of the beach is the beach stadium, a small area used mainly for volleyball tournaments and things like that. Just behind it is a car park which is usually empty, as well as a rocky walkway out to the lighthouse that's very popular with people out for a stroll. I wandered across the carpark - some kids were skateboarding there and an elderly couple were camping in their camper van. They were sitting next to it on chairs with a coffee, chatting. Nice! A welcome escape from the long period of time at home I imagine...I wondered what they were chatting about.

Just behind the carpark is where I was heading - a small area of dunes and long grasses. Some people had chosen to sit amongst them with their towels, avoiding the busier areas of the beach beyond. I tiptoed past them.

I scrambled up one of the dunes to admire the view along the beach, trying not to get sand in my shoes! The sun was so warm and there was no breeze there today for a change! There was something about that sky, the sand and those grasses that made me feel I would like to sit there a peaceful.

Children played in the distance. The calm sea meant there were few surfers that day (it's usually a popular spot for it at this end of the beach). The wheel on the pier turned in the distance. Huge cruise ships were anchored off shore, redundant for the time being in the current situation. No one can deny that in this period of lockdown, there is something healing and calming about the sun and the outdoors, even if those ships were a sad reminder of everything that isn't possible right now. Do you find the same?

It made me think, in fact, how much this period of few places to go has made us all appreciate nature and just being outside so much more! The amazing thing about The Netherlands in this crisis is that we haven't been completely locked down, as most other countries in Europe have been, so we've at least still had the freedom to be out and about.

I wanted to capture the warmth, the vibrant colour of the grasses and that brilliant blue sky in my photos...just the general warm, relaxed feeling of a summer's day on a quiet corner of the beach. A chance to switch off. A chance to warm up! A chance to admire the pier and feel the good atmosphere of people enjoying the sun but without the crowdedness of many beaches in the summertime.

As I headed back to get a drink somewhere, I felt like I had found a little quiet piece of Scheveningen that I will surely go back to - not necessarily for photos (although that's very likely!), but certainly to relax and just enjoy the environment and sound of the sea. Maybe to sit and read a book or just do nothing for a while...

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