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Location: Clearwater, South Carolina, United States

Friday, April 06, 2007

Texas trip - 7

Thursday, April 5th, dawned as bright and sunny as the preceding day was dark and dank. It was a bit cooler and breezier than it had been. The first segment of our adventures today was to go down to the Freeport area and check out the beach for a while. On the way I couldn’t help but notice how much the terrain reminded me of south Florida, particularly how flat the land was and also the canals and drainage areas.

An exception to the similarities would be the skyline with the many chemical plants and refineries that are rife in the area - many processing vertical tank structures clutter the horizon. Also in evidence were the large electrical high line towers that transport the massive amounts of electricity needed in the plants. The Freeport area is a major import/export site for chemical products but also for some fruits, particularly imports of bananas.

The beaches here are not at all like the ones we are familiar with at Myrtle Beach in South Carolina The Gulf coast off the panhandle of Florida has beautiful white sand beaches and the water is so clear that you can see the sharks when they come in for a bite. The sand here is very fine and firmly packed and looks almost like regular dirt. The beach also doesn’t look clean because of all the seaweed that washes up on the shore. It seemed to be rather littered, but since it is a bit early in the season, that may be the reason for that.

This was a drive-on beach and we parked near a fishing pier where several folks were trying to trick the fish into biting. We walked over to an area where vehicles were not allowed and took the kid’s play stuff with us. The temp was not bad but the wind made it seem a bit chilly. The young ones were not complaining and started playing and digging in the sand.

There were even a couple of guys on their surfboard with a sail and they seemed to be having a great time – they did have a partial wet suit on because it was not exactly balmy. One guy even had a huge kite that he used to pull himself with on his surfboard. It was in the form of a large semi-circle with strong ropes and a handle to hold to. This guy was very good at what he did and made several runs down the surf – he would have to get out and walk the kite back up to his starting point and then begin again because of the wind direction.

As the kids were playing, I walked around to check out some of the local beach flora. One that I noticed reminded me of a succulent plant found on the army base where I took basic training. They were all over the place in the sandy soil and back then we just called them ‘ice plants’ because of the pulpy leaves and stems. There were various other plants and grasses but behind the sand of the beach was a low-growing species of cedar that was more of a bush than a tree. It was thriving and looked as though it belonged there.

I’m constantly amazed by the things of God’s creation and this was another time of that. ec


Blogger JunieRose said...

Sounds like a really interesting day at the beach with the kiddies.


4/06/2007 08:58:00 PM  
Blogger Granny said...

One of the things I miss most about the northern CA coastal area is the beaches. We manage to get over there once or twice during the summer vacations and the girls are always so impressed by so much water in one place. The Pacific is a fair sized body of water.

They're not too sure about sharks even though I assure them dabbling a toe or two is probably safe.

4/06/2007 10:26:00 PM  
Blogger CabinWriter-- said...

I've never lived near the beach, so when I'm near one, I don't know how to appreciate it as a bathing beach, but as beauty in itself. Whether there is sand or giant boulders or rocks, I stand at the shoreline engrossed in watching the waves rush towards me. I enjoy reading your blog.

4/07/2007 12:13:00 AM  
Blogger mreddie said...

Junierose - It is somewhat odd and good to see young ones playing with abandonment, with no goal in mind, just playing.

Granny - I agree, the Pacific is a fair sized body of water and the times I have seen it, it looked a bit cleaner than the Atlantic. Of course that was a long time ago and it could have changed.

Cabinwriter - Good to have you stop by the 'Patch'. The waves this day almost seemed angry, as though they were assaulting the beach. Their ire must have been raised by the weather front that had come through the day before. ec

4/07/2007 09:56:00 AM  

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