As soon as the sun rays lifted above the horizon it set fire to the earth, bringing swarms of flies. My sweat pooled in every crevasse. It was 5 a.m and as I unzipped the swag, a lone fly came to greet me, the first for the day. They stuck to every surface on my salted body- eyelids, lips, nose, and inside your ears- everywhere they shouldn’t go, they did.
The camp stove was on, and the coffee brewed. I managed to pester my then-boyfriend enough to rise and rig the boat for our day of exploring and fishing. We only had a brief window where the tides would allow us to launch and retrieve the boat from the shore, so timing was important. As we drove over the crusty red dirt and into the white powdered sand dunes, I couldn’t help but notice the pristine coastline stretching as far as the eye could see. Not a soul in sight but each other.
He backed the car to the edge of the water as it lapped peacefully against the trailer tires. I unhooked the tinnie and started the motor, throwing in a stupid attempt at a little donut before picking him up from the shore, and off we went, into the bluest of blue waters, towards a glistening horizon, on a journey for finding nowhere. It was at this moment I felt truly ‘alone’- at peace. Just us, the only humans for as far as the eye could see, alone with the big ol’ blue. I thought of how some might call this moment one of ‘calmness’ but it couldn’t be farther.
The ocean tides were strong, gushing out of the bay and towards the horizon. Birds overhead were screeching to one another; fish were flapping about as sharks pushed them to the surface as their morning meals- this place was ALIVE. There was even a vicious looking sea snake cruising by, and turtles appearing to be mating on the waters’ surface in the distance.
It was uplifting, the thought of it being just the two of us, completely alone in this giant blue world. It was liberating. The gorgeous weather upheld and the day drew on, as we found reefs and rocks leading us to some spectacular blood pumping, tight lined fishing. Ocean fishing is new to me, quite a contrast from the usual estuaries and freshwater creeks, but even with the wrong gear I managed to score a decent catch throughout the day. Watching the enormous tides turn from our tiny tinnie was a breathtaking experience. We were simply fluff in a washing machine, being thrown around as waves broke in every direction. Not a lip of wind yet we were flung across the big blue like a dandelion– it was time to get out of there.
Returning to camp as a sunburnt cherub, I was a changed soul. My mind was opened and from that day on the water at Cape Leveque, I became scarily addicted to the feeling of being without humans, and oh what a glorious feeling this can be.
Only in solitude do we find ourselves; and in finding ourselves, we find in ourselves all our brothers in solitude -Miguel De Unamuno