I love being by the water. I genuinely own of those ‘sounds of the waves’ CD’s that no one should admit to owning. Nothing makes me feel more at home or calmer than a quick dip of my toes in the water or poking them under warm grains of sand. My idea of what constitutes a decent beach have somewhat skyrocketed since enjoying the beautiful beaches of Oz, but I can still appreciate a good old British beach as well. My love of the water stretches to oceans, rivers, streams, hell – if it’s a puddle big enough to jump in I’m happy. There’s something very calming about the ebb and flow of the tide, the melodic sound of the waves crashing against the shore and the seemingly endless horizon. Ironically I don’t do so well on the water if travelling on anything larger than a canoe, meaning that you’ll mostly find me on dry land. I also have a shark phobia (very sensibly, I think) which can make things interesting. But I’m ok with being left ashore. I can happily tolerate the stickiness of the factor four hundred sunscreen I have to slap on my pasty white skin or the grains of sand that somehow manage to find their way into ALL the wrong places. I don’t even mind the elderly gentlemen who still insist on rocking the speedos (a bit like an eclipse, just try not to look directly at it to avoid possible blindness…). It’s all part of the experience. I’m lucky to live in a part of the country that’s not further than an hour from the sea. I remember the butterflies of excitement in my tummy as we drove closer and closer to the seaside as a child and that feeling has never gone away. What a dream it would be to live right next to the water. I wonder if the novelty would ever wear off over the years or if I would continue to be mesmerised. Now that’s an experiment I’d be more than willing to be a part of.