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14 April 2016

living near water is good for the soul

Our spirits were high as we sailed into that first place together. We looked past the tight walls in our place on the Calls, because we'd never lived so inside the city before. The bass of the bustle nestled into every corner of our small, compact flat. If you look out my window all the way to the left you can see the river, I would say, as if I’d be spending every waking moment with a craned neck. It didn’t matter then that we rarely saw sunlight. Back then, we were out and we were free. Living satisfactorily on our barely there wages, in somewhere we’d spent ages searching for. 

I stood there a year later, looking bleakly at the bricked walls of the buildings across the alley. Tired from the endless drunken arguments staged beneath my bedroom window. My sad, half-dead plant drooping on the windowsill. Too much darkness, I thought, laden by grey heavy clouds.

In a lot of ways I think every part of me had been yearning, aching, for this change before I even knew it. As soon as we stepped into our new abode overlooking the river, flooded with the shy scorch of sunshine, I felt home. We opened the big glass doors of our juliet balcony, illuminated and afloat with happiness. We drank fizzy wine to celebrate. Satiated by our little oasis of zen in the midst of the hubbub of the city.

Looking back, my childhood memories revolve mainly around water. Sitting with my parents on gnarled wooden benches, eating chips on the seafront. The Greek oceans that moored our summers. Welsh canals we waded down many moons ago. 

I don’t think the novelty will ever wear off, I think now as I gaze at the flowing water. I breathe in. I breathe out. I feel calm. 

When I was younger, I’d journey to the beach to sit and recharge. Later, when pebbled shores were replaced by Northern brooks and streams, I’d stroll around purple heather framed reservoirs, drinking in the serenity to soothe my anxious mind. Now, I'm lucky enough to look out my window and be filled with the same feeling of safety. Because for me in those moments, everything else just kind of melts away. 

Living near water is good for the soul.

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