The biggest drawback of this Spain holiday was that I couldn’t swim. Something I love. Thus I was confined to the beach bar where I sat and watched others swim. And I sketched.
Because of the heat I drank the one glass of water after another with every now and then a delicious, freshly squeezed fruit juice. I ran through that whole menu. The thing I completely forgot about that first day on the beach, was that all that fluid needed to go somewhere. I realized that with a shock sometime during the day. I looked down the “boardwalk,” seeing the single “cabine de toilette” winking at me way over there at the entrance to the beach. I looked at the wheelchair next to me, buried under a mountain of stuff. I looked at my crutches and down at my blistered and calloused hands. I looked at my family who were bobbing specks in the water. I felt desperation clouding over me like a tsunami from which there is no escape. I started praying. For what I don’t really know, because there wasn’t any superhuman intervention that could change my situation. Physiology all by itself is already a wondrous complexity. But I prayed anyway and decided to give 2 minutes to some kind of miracle to find its way towards me. After 2 seconds I decided the only only way to solve this problem is the old fashioned human way. I carefully got up from my chair, all the while trying to do it speedily. Care and speed, those were the keywords. I looked across the beach to the water and “miraculously” mon cheri made his way to the beach bar. I signaled him with fierce intimidation to move his butt! Somehow I got into the wheelchair and we made it down the boardwalk to the “cabine” without me flying from the chair “en route”. Close to the cabin I stared down everybody who just thought of going ahead of me with a look that clearly stated: “Don’t even think about it for I will run you down”, while waving my crutches into the ready-to-use position. Before we came to a stop I pirouetted onto the crutches and into the cabin, didn’t even lock the door and shouted from the inside all kinds of instructions to mon chéri. There was no trace of my usual grace and inhibition and dignity left. Human was all I could be at that moment
I had the greatest holiday on the costa Brava in Spain , broken leg and all. My family decided a wheelchair is the way to get around effortlessly and although I complained loud and clear, I have to admit they were right. I could of course only sit at the “xiringuito” (beach bar) and sketch the world around me, while friend and family were out on the beach, in the water, snorkeling, sailing. But that is OK, I will get my turn next year.
the sketches are all done in situ and there will be blotches all over, because I turned pages while the paint wasn’t completely dry. a lot of mistakes too, which stayed on the pages, since I did everything directly in pen and just sketched over the mistakes. As you can see, my sketchbooks aren’t perfectly beautiful…too many blops and bloops!
xiringuito, Canyelles platja