The alarm went off just as planned, and while I'd like to say I sprang out of bed, it was more of an oozing down the side of the sheets. Having finally labored into the shower and turning the tap to cold, my goal was to shock my body into waking up. I was looking a little scruffy so I decided I would QUICKLY shave as I was running a little late already. I foamed up and sped through my daily ritual haphazardly, then for some reason my razor decided to grow and extra set of teeth. I damn near cut right through my jugular! Well, maybe there was only a drop or two of blood but at 5 am everything is amplified. Having secured the tourniquet, the bleeding was stopped and I was off to make the daily pot of coffee.
Thankfully, I had pre-grinded the beans yesterday so this was a welcome time saver. A bowl of fruit, a glass of water, and a quick transfer from the coffee pot to my over-priced stainless steel mug from the Starbucks in Madrid, Spain, and I was off the greet to day.
I loaded all my camera gear into the vehicle, placed my coffee mug into its appropriate holder and sped towards my destination. Usually, if I was back in Canada and I was really tired while driving I would simply open the window and stick my head out into the biting more air and this would be sufficient to wake me up. Unfortunately, that little trick doesn't work down here. Sticking your head out of the window when it's 28 degrees celsius at 5:45 am only causes you to fall into a state of drowsiness. What I really needed was an injection of caffeine. Ah yes, a full mug of coffee! I cracked the seal and proceeded to tip the mug, dispensing some of that sweet café into its proper resting place, my stomach. More sips, and more sips, I arrived at my destination. Wait a second, why is my shirt wet! Not only had the coffee gone into my mouth but apparently my white shirt had also received half the caffeine fix as well...lovely!
Ok, so I was ready to go albeit with a wet, coffee stained shirt. Well, it turns out that while I was ready, the receiving party had other plans. There was no one around...5 minutes....10 minutes....15 minutes...lovely! It was on to Plan B, the sun was just beginning to rise and I was tired and had now been stood up but I had always wanted to photograph Chahue Beach, so I made a mad dash down the road racing the rising light the whole way. Was I going to make it in time, or would I get there only to be disappointed as I lost a beautiful sunrise?
I finally arrived, grabbed all my gear including tripod and raced towards the beach as the sun continued to steadily rise. As I approached the beach the two armed guards locked in their radar as they eyed me up. I wasn't sure if it was the super-sized bags under my eyes or the fact that my tripod looked a little like an AK-47 in the dark. Once they realized that I was tired and it was only a tripod, they both smiled and said good morning, and I hit the beach running as my sandals kicked up sand behind me. Sprinting towards the far end of the beach I passed what appeared to be a bunch of Richard Simmons devotees, and the bushy haired, short shorts person lead the group through their morning routine.
I think I'm going to make it! I was nearing the end of the beach, and I timed the surge of the high tide hitting the sea wall, making sure not to get wet. One more surge of ocean water and I would be past the rising sea....ok...go for it...oh no! What appeared to be firm wet sand, was actually quick sand! I now found myself up to my waist in sand as another surge of water poured up to the sea wall. I knew I had to get out fast as I couldn't take another pounding from the sea and I would most certainly only go deeper in, gear and all! Thankfully, I was right near a low staircase so I managed to place my elbows on to the ledge and work my way out of the sand before the new swell came in...mind you, I was a pair of sandals lighter. Yep, I had now lost my sandals to the pit of sand that almost ate me.
Having risen this early, cut my neck shaving, spilled coffee all over myself, lost my sandals in the quick sand, and now become soaked entirely from the chest down, I had come too far to loose my shot. I finally reached the end of the beach and got setup, the sun just beginning to peak over the lush green hills, and barring a major natural disaster I was going to get my shot.
So, what is the moral of this story. No matter how bad things are going or how bad you think things are, when one door closes another opens and a little perseverance will lead you to your goal.
Below is the fruit of my labor...I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. And, if you have any compassion please send me a new pair of sandals ;-)
|Playa Chahue Sunrise - Click on photo for full size|
Have a great weekend!