For most of my life, I have lived near the water. Lake Erie, the Atlantic Ocean, the Pacific Ocean, Lake Michigan, Narragansett Bay. All large bodies of water easily accessible from my homes. I'm not quite sure how I weathered my landlocked years--four years in Durham, North Carolina (summers on Lake Erie, I suppose) or two years in Atlanta, but I did. I think that I was too young and too self-involved to truly appreciate such things when I was in my twenties.
I'm now in my forties, and I live in Rhode Island. In case you're a little rusty on your geography, it's not actually an island, but on a daily basis it often feels to me that it is. My town is on a peninsula. My neighborhood is on a peninsula. My house is at the end of that peninsula within a peninsula. Local friends joke that I'm not a good carpooling candidate because I live at land's end. I do not have waterfront property, but it takes only a short walk to get to it. I drive over bridges, along rivers and the bay all day every day, and it is positively beautiful.
I never know how long we will stay in one place or where our next destination may be, but should we ever move from here, I desperately hope it is to a town on the water. Please, at least let there be a small lake that I can cling to. Living near water makes me happy. Watching the water makes me calm and grounded.
After cooking, eating, and cleaning up Thanksgiving dinner for the four of us, 20-30 minutes remained of daylight. I'd been cooped up inside on a beautiful fall day and rushed to take a short walk before dark. Fortunately, everyone declined my invitation to join me. The sun was setting, the neighborhood was nearly silent, and I wandered over toward the water to watch the sunset. I'm grateful that I did. Not only did I enjoy a gorgeous, quiet few moments alone, but I was reminded yet again how fortunate I am to live near the water.