On time

This photograph reminds me of the Odyssey. Or something. The little boat is all by itself, yet appears to have several people on board. Alone but not alone. Perhaps these are Ancient Greek waters. The dingy could be a small Ancient Greek fishing vessel propelled by Ancient Greek oars. The people on board could be wearing Ancient Greek robes and carrying Ancient Greek spears and shields – just in case. Or this little boat could be transporting a few furtive Vikings from Norway to England as they survey the coast and plan future battles.

High tide is getting later and later in the day. This was taken yesterday just after 5pm. These late tides are a bit of a challenge with shorter days and cooler temperatures. Daylight savings ended at the beginning of April so it is dark by about 6pm these days.

Solitary little boat floats near Pt Chevalier beach on the upper Waitemata Harbour April 16 2015

Solitary little boat floats near Pt Chevalier beach on the upper Waitemata Harbour April 16 2015

Daylight savings gives us a tiny taste of time travel. A whole hour. Reading is time travel. Any reading. The older the text, the further the travel. This blog has two time-threads running through it. The present, and the past. Present swims, and past swims that I have photographed but haven’t written about. Both of these threads are chronological. The present is always chronological and it gets mixed up with the past which is also chronological but only sometimes. I’d like to catch the past up to the present so there are no past photographs and swims left in the past. But they are all in the past. Even the present is in the past by the time I write about it. So, it is all in the past. And who cares about chronology. Well, I do. I love chronology. Cause and effect. The order of things. This happened, and then that. Events influence each other. Experiences shape us. Life seems to be a conflicted position a person sits in and is both being moulded by external forces and attempting to mould them.

Chronos is the father of Zeus, the father of all Gods. Time is the father of everything. Time marches on. Time is linear and time is circular. Trauma alters the relationship with time. Time is constant but to the traumatised it is excessively fast or excruciatingly slow. The head spins. Moments become hours. Hours disappear. Time is pain. The wish is for time to rewind back to the idyllic conditions before the trauma.

In relation to the thread detailing the swims of the distant past, the next batch of photographs were taken at Surfers Paradise in Australia. I’m going to write about that in the next blog then come back to this one and create a link that will travel forward in time. Kind of. Another thread I left hanging was mentioning that the Cricket World Cup final was currently being fought out between New Zealand and Australia. Well it didn’t turn out to be much of a fight. The Australians wiped the floor with the New Zealand cricketers. A game like that is not particularly pleasant to watch. Not so much because ‘my’ team lost, but because there was very little tension. I really felt for the New Zealand team when the inevitable loss became evident. I felt their pain and felt for them a bit more as they had to stick it out right to the end.

April swimming and the end of the Odyssey

There has been a cold snap as we fall deeper into autumn but somehow I have still managed to swim every day. Yesterday I was suffering the third day of the worst headache ever (complete with nausea) and was quite unsure about whether to brave a cold swim but despite the odds it completely cleared out the aches and pains.

Still swimmable

Still swimmable but there weren’t many swimmers at Pt Chevalier beach on April 15 2015

I am particularly proud of the swim I had on Monday the 13th of April. When I arrived at the beach I discovered there was an incredibly strong wind blowing straight onshore and no one in the water so I decided not to swim but walked along the beach instead. My jacket was virtually useless in the strong cold wind. I was about to go home when a fellow swimmer arrived and encouraged me to give it a go. It was more difficult than usual to get into the sea but worth the effort. I was tossed about the waves in a manner that reminded me of a west coast surf beach but this felt a bit safer because there wasn’t a dangerous undertow pulling me out into deep water.

A stormy day with strident westerly onshore winds kept most swimmers away from Pt Chevalier beach on April 13th

A stormy day with strident onshore winds kept swimmers away from Pt Chevalier beach on April 13 2015

Prior to the cold snap from Monday to yesterday the weather has been surprisingly warm and calm for this time of the year. Here are a few photographs from the last couple of weeks.

Autumn paddle boarders at Pt Chevalier beach

Autumn paddle boarders at Pt Chevalier beach in early April 2015

Looking north west as the sun goes down.

Sun is about to set at Pt Chevalier beach

Sun is about to set at Pt Chevalier beach in early April 2015

The composition of the following photograph could be said to be somewhat boring as it is very static and based around the rule of thirds but I quite like how the sky/air sea/water and sand/earth contrast with each other and have different textures, and how the light/fire interacts with each part.

A very calm morning at Pt Chevalier beach

A very calm morning at Pt Chevalier beach in April 2015

The following photograph reminds me of pictures I have seen of the coast in England. It could make a lovely watercolour painting. The red and white sail seems to erase everything behind it and takes on the appearance of a (triangluar) door to another world.

Love the red and white sail on the small yacht.

Pt Chevalier beach in autumn 2015. Love the red and white sail on the tiny yacht.

Oh, and I finished reading Homer’s Odyssey. It is surprisingly cinematic. A beautifully written action movie. Odysseus is the (original) hero. The ultimate, prototypical hero. The parallel action sequences are quite striking and remind me of parallel editing in films showing two (or more) things occurring simultaneously building towards a climax. Plus there was the added tension of dramatic irony where the reader knows things that the characters in the story do not. ‘We’ know that the beggar is actually Odysseus, but the characters don’t know it for a while. And it totally amazes me that we can get inside the head of someone who was alive almost 3,000 years ago.