The Come-Back, Day 9. Of Beaches and Scheduling.

Since yesterday, I didn't finish getting everything I needed, and even added to the list, I will go out this afternoon. Yes, I'm feeling masochistic, going out in summery afternoon weather with a mask.

They are going to make wearing a mask obligatory in closed public spaces and in open spaces if two feet cannot be kept between people. So, as soon as you set foot on the sidewalk, you'll need to wear a mask now. Yes, I will probably forego leaving the house a lot this summer. Not even to buy clothes. 

These two months have widened my girth, which is very slowly declining again through walking. So, I have t-shirts that don't fit me, and t-shirts that have acquired strange stains after having been folded and not touched during the winter. Perhaps I will have faith in my walking ability, not bother to replace the stained ones, and just make do this year. If I'm not going to go out much, it won't matter.

While I am not a beach bunny, there are summer days when swimming in the sea crosses my mind. I hate to lie in the sun just to toast pink, so the only reason I go to the beach is to swim a bit and then lie in the shade to dry, while reading a book. Before going home, after a maximum of about two hours, I buy an ice cream and slowly eat it, sitting on the towel, staring out at the mass of humanity on the hot sand. Because of my preferences, I only go on days with high tide in the afternoon, and when the ocean temperature is decent. I see no reason in cramming myself into a swimsuit just to wade in ankle-deep water, or to instantly freeze upon the first tentative step into the ocean.

So, going to the beach, for me, is more a question of an on-the-spot decision. If it's warm enough, and the tide and ocean temperature are right, I may well decide to go to my favorite beach in the next township in the afternoon. I tend to find space to spread my towel on the grass in the shade, since everyone is fighting for the sand, and on afternoons of high tide, that area is smaller. But this year, I'll probably have to plan things in advance.

The regional government has suggested to the coastal townships, that a good idea to limit overcrowding would be to install an appointment system by internet. It seems reasonable until you start to think about summer in Galicia. 

In the months of July and August, hundreds, no, thousands of city people, especially from Madrid and Barcelona, head for the coasts of Galicia. Many have second homes here. Others occupy hotels, hostels, tourist apartments, campings, and whatnot. All of these visitors consider it an imperative to spend the afternoons on the beach, which is why our beaches tend to the overflowing, because lots of locals also like to spend the afternoon toasting or bathing. My husband would even go for a dip after work one summer, when he was working on a house that was within a few meters of the beach.

So, when I decide around lunchtime that it might be a nice day to lay out my towel by the sea, and I go to make an appointment at my favorite beach, I will probably discover that all the spots from six in the evening have been taken since seven in the morning. Or earlier, if the forecast calls for heat. The only way local people will have a guaranteed appointment is if most summer visitors stay home. That won't happen, especially this year that everyone who lives in a city apartment is looking for wide open spaces. 

So, this summer will continue more or less like the past two months. I shall leave the house only to go walking and for essentials. In a health sense, it's good, though not for mental health. Some good news is that a sample from a patient in Arizona showed the virus is weaker. But, it's only one sample and one patient. That the virus is weakening as it's being tramsmitted is yet to be proven. Contagions are going down, and that's the reason deaths are going down, too. But people still get very ill from this thing. That it might mean there won't be a second wave worse than the first, is a possibility. But contagions will rise in a couple of months, most likely. 

I understand the need for distancing, and mask wearing. But people will be people. My generation was one of the first in Spain to think me, me, me. We are Spain's boomers. We taught our children the same, and I think it will take more than a pandemic and two months of quarantine to change. 

In the meantime, the sun shines and the air is warm.

Life continues.

Galicia, Beach, Cíes Islands


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