A family reunion on the Pacific Coast brought the Simmonds family together after two and a half years. We travelled from all corners of Europe to meet up in Portland, Oregon. Then it was out to the seaside for a week in Lincoln City staying in a timber-framed house with views of the ocean.
The greenish-blue waters of the Earth’s grandest, deepest and most impressive ocean kept on rolling and foaming, spraying and looping, up and down the beaches that fringe the coast. We had a ring side view of the Pacific Ocean.
Just up the road from the house our neighbours were noisily going about their day; seals, sea lions, otters and pelicans fishing the coastal waters of the Pacific Ocean with enthusiasm and tenacity. The occasional surfer appeared between cresting waves and sometimes managed to ride the surf to the shore.
Ghostly tree trunks, bleached to a lifeless grey hue by sun and salt water, lay marooned on the beach, washed up at high tide. The timber wasteland gave the beach a surreal almost melancholy air.
For me the opportunity to spend time with my family surrounded by the fresh air and open skies of the Pacific North-West was a dream come true. The magnificence of the natural environment combined with the freedom to talk, to laugh, to argue, to joke, just like the seals on the rocks at the lighthouse, created a perfect setting for our reunion trip.
I’d like to dedicate these words to Andrew and Lucy, Alistair and William. These individuals have supported me and challenged me, teased me and encouraged me unceasingly. I’ll be revisiting the Oregon coastal experience in the coming months. For now these few words provide me with a postcard, a snapshot, a moment in time, that I want to remember forever.