Plus, I wanted a beer as anyone in their right mind does at the beach.
I retreated outside of the surf and they began to dig.
The tide would roll in, wash away their progress, or aid it, depending on how they chose to look at it, and then give way. It left behind that fine, silky silt that somehow finds a way to stick to and in everything, which only served to amuse them more. The light, of course, was stunning, so I tucked away my Shiner and reached for my camera.
As I shot, I could see it coming - I live and breathe for these children, I can predict their moves a mile away, as any mother can. Sure enough, the more my son dug, the more he decided he should use the extraneous sand to cover himself, until he had achieved full zombielike status. His sister rolled her eyes to hide her jealousy that she didn't think of it first and then ultimately joined his antics. I laughed, shook my head and documented the whole charade.
That night, after all was silent, I returned to my images for the day. I began to edit and applied my signature black and white post processing to images I felt needed it. As I did, I began to sink in my chair. The images that had seemed comical hours before, now sent me reeling. My son looked like he was covered in disease. It was beautifully unsettling.
And then I understood.
The day, although light and enjoyable had felt somber. News of a growing threat was becoming harder and harder to avoid. I tend to distrust politicians and ignore mainstream media drama and had been doing so fairly effortlessly, but something felt different. It felt as if I should pay attention, but not to what my attention was being directed to. I stared at the foreshadowing on my screen and let the realization sink in. We would be dealing with a pandemic on the surface which would serve to reveal a much more longstanding insidious disease that has in some way infected us all to our core.
Would we see it?
Would we be willing to face it collectively?
Would we be willing to face it within ourselves?
Less than two weeks later we were collectively sent to our individual corners to find out.