My mum and her sister have been inseparable all their lives and this is a place that means so much to them, and to all of our family.
Foam flies over the sea wall. Hanging high before dropping back into the 40 foot tide. Onlookers step up onto the in-built benches to peer over the side, willing the wave to make appear again. The sea is deep, choppy, threatening, promising. A watery surge hits the sea wall, and flies into the air again and the wind blows the breezy brine on to the prom. Surprise lashes whip children into hysterical laughter as dad is drenched. Mum laughs. The kids clamour for more but dad, recovering, smiling now, leads them away and onto grass that is too far for the sea to reach today. A game in the sun will dry them out.
Waves continue to tease, flying up into the air where the wind carries their spray back down onto the prom. A group of boys jump to catch the edge of the splash without getting wet. Belly laughs whipped back by the wind reach the ears of two sisters who turn to watch the game. Now in their seventies they have seen this scene many times but find fun in it still. Reminded of children, grandchildren and their own youth, one encourages the boys to be braver, the other issues a warning to be careful. “Don’t go near the steps” she says, and “where are your parents?”
The boys run away along the prom and the old ladies resume their walk, but now closer to the wall and with arms out to catch the waves.