Driftwood

I go to the beach fairly frequently, I think. It’s one of the benefits of living so close to the coast – I tend not to think about it, but I have easier access to ocean than a lot of people.

Throughout my childhood, there was one specific beach – a relatively small area, a short (read: “possible with small children”) drive away from the house we always stayed at – that I especially loved.

We called it Driftwood Beach.

Driftwood Beach is a little ways off the highway, with a small parking lot that offers a couple paths to the beach itself. Note that the picture above doesn’t actually lead to the beach – we took a wrong turn, and I took a picture.

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The actual approach to the beach looks more like this. I’ve taken to calling it “Dinosaur Land,” after my little cousin called it that while we were walking through there._MG_1087

There’s a very good reason I call it Driftwood Beach.

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But the thing about the beach was never about how pretty it is. I was a little kid, who cares about that?_MG_1109

No, it was about the raw creativity it inspired. We’d go there, and myself and my cousins and my uncles and my grandpa would start building some shelters while my mom and aunts and grandma would watch, or maybe take some pictures of their own._MG_1112

The constructions varied – nothing was ever there the next year, but new things were. People’s creativity astounded me – you’d get little shelters like this one, or things the size of small houses._MG_1113

This was my Minecraft._MG_1114

Years before Minecraft would exist in even its earliest forms, I had it._MG_1133

Unlimited creativity, such as it was, bolstered by the infinite imagination of a child._MG_1146

And what could be more important than that?_MG_1155 _MG_1159 _MG_1165