Playa Santispac

At every beach I visit, I pick up a handful of sand and examine it.  Some grains are uniform, some are wildly erratic, smooth, sharp, light, dark - all telling a minutely detailed story about their origins.  Every grain a personality.  Here, at Playa Santispac, the beach is made of tiny fragments of broken shells and tumbled bones, not a product of the sea eroding the earth, but of the sea herself.  Now, at sunrise, the sand is a complex peach hue, but in a few hours the sun will bleach the grains to a dusty white.  The surrounding land is volcanic and looks it: sharp, hard, imposing and unfamiliar.  Rounded granitic rocks are held fast on the face of an exhausted lava flow, pressed into the still soft looking basalt.  These cliffs are black and red, a contrast to the pale, sea-animal sand, piquing my amateur geologist's interest.  I attempt to know all of the secrets of geological time, sussing out clues, keeping mental notes, telling myself the long-time story of this place.  This beach is where the sea met the land and neither had to compromise.  The ocean created her own shore from the shells of her jelly-bodied ward and the earth rested, resisting the soft licks of salt water, only yielding to create craggy overhangs and caves where brown pelicans now sit in the shade.