There are many wonderful aspects about living so close to a beach. Apart from the pure delight of having spectacular views and the reassuring and calming sounds of the sea there is the flotsam, jetsam and wrack. The daily delivery and dispersal of a random range of mundane, ordinary, intriguing, spectacular and strange objects laid out along the shore for inspection, appraisal and sorting.
With a shared experience of primary school education we all know that sorting is a big deal. Separating objects according to their similarities and differences always seemed to be a major classroom activity – along with learning the times tables and the weights and measures of every substance in the known world.
Amazingly, beaches sort naturally! It’s not something they have to be taught. Over the course of the daily tidal action this sorting takes place on each beach – and, incredibly, along a stretch of beaches – with each beach attracting its own particular tidal debris.
Our beach seems to specialise in small cowrie shells and flat periwinkles.