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Every grain of sand

A few weeks ago just as the last rays of summer shined, I went to the beach. Along with a friend, we took a stroll on the Zandvoort wet sand. Armed with our cameras we stared in silence at the sea.

We also shared stories, feelings and struggles. I have always been amazed at the sight of the ocean. It makes me question my importance. The ocean could eat me up, swallow me. I also think a lot about every single grain of sand, and how earth is like a grain of sand in the vast universe, and I feel even smaller.

I love the salty wind, on this part of the world, always cold, always present. The first time I set foot on a sandy beach was in fact a gray winter day, we were visiting family in the Netherlands and made a trip to this other beach near the Hague. I remember thinking, that this could not be a real beach, a beach has to have golden sand, and a deep clear blue sea, and sun. My mother thought that it would be a good idea to collect shells, so we began picking them up and putting them in our pockets. By the end of that walk, by the dark water and all the shades of a grey sky, I had dozens of shells.

I took the shells back to Bolivia, which is a landlocked country, where not many people have the luxury to go to the beach. I shared them. I played with my lovely shells. My mother used them to make bathroom decorations. They were so special to me, the evidence that indeed I saw the sea, it was real. To this day I take great pleasure in touching and analyzing the shells. At first glance, they all look the same, but when you take a closer look you realize that each one is unique, each shell has slightly different colours and patterns, much like all of us humans. We all look the same, we are all the same, but we are not. Each and every one of us is unique. We are all trying to get out of the water, avoid drowning and live our lives in the best way we can.

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