Thanks to the SUPER MOON, low tide in Brighton has been exceptionally low for the last few nights.
I try and keep this blog to vaguely creative stuff, but this definitely seemed worthy of an entry for sheer interestingness...
I went down to the beach at about 6.20 on Sunday night for my evening stroll, completely unaware of the freakish events the moon had got going on. (Well, I was aware the moon had been unusually bright, but hadn't appreciated it's impact on the tides...)
When I got down there and saw the vast and unusual expanse of shining sand I immediately scampered home and pulled on my wellington boots with the glee of a small child preparing for snow. I actually RAN back down the hill to the beach, because I was worried the sun would set before I got there. Fortunately it hadn't, and I wandered down onto the sand and aimlessly wandered in and out of the sea, watching the sun set.
It was pretty beautiful.
Next day at work we were talking about it, and I learnt that the tide was going to be at it's very lowest that night, at exactly 6.30. This time I prepared, and headed down there earlier, at about 6.
Any regular readers of this blog will know of my undying love for Brighton, and it's nights like this that confirm it... at the point of the beach parallel to my house there was a band making themselves a music video. I have no idea who they are, but they made for wonderful listening.
Tide from Emma Charleston on Vimeo.
While they played, parents and children paddled in the sea, both in wellington boots and some, bravely with bare feet.
I found a HUGE starfish in the shallows, and pointed it out to a small child and his mother who were stood nearby. We all stood and looked at it and tried to decide if it was alive or dead (difficult to tell with starfish)
I made my way along to the derelict West Pier, where I could already see crowds gathered. Normally the top of the pier is a hundred metres or so out to sea, and much of the wreckage leading up to it is invisible beneath the waves. This low tide exposed more of it than I had ever seen before - possibly more than anyone has ever seen.
At some points on the beach you could get within just a few feet of the main wreckage, and there were people in waders walking around and underneath, exploring the structure like never before.
(Just after that picture was taken, that guy stepped off his board-thing, and the water there was only about knee deep)
The general atmosphere amongst everyone on the beach was one of such friendliness and marvel, and so many people were down there taking advantage of all kinds of things you can't do on the normally pebbly beach... cycling, sandcastle building, running...
And as the sun set and I walked home, I came across these men with head torches and mysterious apparatus, sucking up tubes of sand and ejecting them onto the beach... I asked one of them what he was doing, and he said they were looking for worms for fishing. I said it looked like an awful lot of effort, and he said yes, but a lot of fun too.
I walked back to my house and left them too it, with their satisfying 'sluuuuurrrrrp - SCHLOP' noises, and nearby, a couple dancing on the sand in the sunset. It was insanely corny, but warmed my heart :)
There won't be another Super Moon like this until 2059.... I wonder where I'll be then.