Tuesday, 21 November 2017

A Place Once Called Paradise

I remember that day clearly. A weekend in September. The summer has ended but the days were still long. Spain was an unexplored territory and the possibilities for adventures were endless, much like the love that has found me.

We were driving back after a day trip in Casares but before we could reach the bend in the coastal road where the rock of Gibraltar comes into view, we made a quick detour.

Playa Paradiso. Paradise Beach. And that was what it was.

Behind a neat row of white-washed houses with brightly coloured front yards was a vast expanse of clear blue sea against the pebbled shore. There was no one else around, the seasonal visitors have gone. For a brief moment, that heaven on earth was ours.

We sat in the beach for a long time, listening to the songs of the sea and watching the waves crash against the rocks. Until the blue sky turned into a palette of colours as the sun slowly went to bed and the full moon rose in its place, casting a pale band of silver in the Mediterranean.

In the years that we lived in England, we thought of that place often. Our idealised version of Spain – an earthly paradise that begs to be called our home. We wondered for a long time what it would be like to wake up with the sea in your doorstep and to watch those sunsets every day.

It took a while but we did follow that dream. And yet it was not until a year after we have moved to Costa del Sol that we found ourselves in that very same spot again. The reality has sunk in by then, the future was bleak and we have realised that our sunny spot wasn’t ours for keeps.

Perhaps that’s why the place we returned to was no longer the paradise we have remembered. The shore has been littered by debris, remnants of the storm that has passed only a few days back. The houses facing the sea looked a bit rundown, a few structures remained unfinished. The fishing boats looked discarded. And yet it was this version of Spain that we prefer to cherish in our memories. More than a piece of paradise, it was a place with real people and real problems, one we fondly called home, even if for just a short time.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...