Simon Bisson (sbisson) wrote,
Simon Bisson
sbisson

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Memories and images: back to my favourite beach

I love beaches, those dramatic spaces where air, land and water meet. And, drawn like a moth to the coast, I've been on many: the pink coral sands of Bermuda, the wide expanses of the French Atlantic coast near Bordeaux, little coves of crystal water on the Croatian Adriatic coast, the sculpted shores of the south coast of Hong Kong, the flint banks of Shingle Street, the black sands of a collapsed volcano on Lanzarote, and the wide open skies of a winter's afternoon at Reculver.

But there's one spot I really love, one beach I could sit on for hours, a beach I grew up with.

Jersey isn't a big island, and my grandparents lived just on the south-east corner of the island, at La Rocque. It's a lovely area, with pink granite houses and a small harbour still used by inshore fishermen. While most people tend to stop at the big beach, sheltered from westerly winds by the granite harbour wall, those in the know walk down the harbour, to a set of steps by a plaque commemorating the attempted invasion of Jersey by the French in 1781.

The steps go over the top the harbour wall, dropping you down to one of the quietest and most pleasant beaches you will ever find. Soft white sand billows around pink granite outcrops. The beach shelves gently down to the sea, azure blue like only a summer Jersey sea. When the tide is in, there's a small island in the middle of the cove, sea pinks nodding on its grassy summit. When the tide is out rock pools run all the way to the horizon, a mile or more beyond the coast.

It's an ideal beach for children, gentle seas, soft sands, rocks to climb and rock pools to explore. It's also a pleasant place for adults, quiet and calm, just the lap of gentle waves on the shore, and the ripple of children's laughter.

Last weekend, back on Jersey, marypcb and I spent an afternoon on that beach. And it was just as I remembered it.


The harbour wall and the beach
The harbour wall and the beach


The island in the middle of the cove
The island in the middle of the beach at high tide


The martello tower watching the shore
The martello tower watching over the beach


Pink granite and blue sea
Pink granite and blue sea


Looking west, past Le Hocq to Green Island
Looking west to Green Island, past Le Hocq

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