A few years ago, I visited a magical place. No, it wasn’t Wonderland, Middle Earth or Narnia – although those are on my bucket list. A group in my school was going on a three-day retreat somewhere ( I didn’t know where), and there was space available if I was interested. Why not? I thought. We were on Spring Break and I had nothing better to do. And so it was that I found myself at Ender’s Island, Connecticut, a tiny, beautiful outcrop of rock that was constantly caressed by the Atlantic Ocean.
We arrived at night after a three-hour drive.
I could hear the waves, and feel the ocean breeze. It was as if between them, they were welcoming me.
For the next three days, I took every chance I could to explore the island. It wasn’t at all big, but it was full of so many enchanting things that I often stood in the exact same place, looking at the exact same thing for a long while before I was able to pry myself and go elsewhere.
I don’t remember ever being so close to the ocean. I am normally afraid of water (well, large bodies of water) but this time, I was fascinated by it.
Perhaps it was an effect of the island, or my enthrallment, but even the most mundane things became extraordinary in my eyes.
While on the island, I stopped thinking in words, but in shapes, and colours, textures and patterns.
I promptly forgot what we discussed during the retreat. All I remember was a quiet and unshakable sense of contentment at being surrounded by subtle beauty.
It was here that I understood why authors of the books I read spend several words trying to describe the landscape. I think they’re brave for trying. I think certain kinds of beauty cannot be captured in words.
When the time came, I was sad to leave.
However, I didn’t stay sad for very long.