At the beach

When I was a kid staying at my Nana’s house for the summer, often a load of my cousins would be staying too. Sometimes 4 generations of the family were all there together. My grandparents had 12 children, my Mum was the next to youngest, so I have 32 full cousins and quite a few second cousins too! With all the aunts and uncles that adds up to quite a houseful.

There were a lot of us! On hot days we’d all pile into various uncles’ cars and head for The Beach. There was sand, and sea, and rocks for rock pooling. There were even great places to explore when the tide was out, like The Needles Eye, The Boggie Hole, and Piper’s Cove. There were adders on the rocks and dangerous tides that could trap you. Every year my Nana warned us of the terrible agonised death suffered by some poor wee girl who’d trodden on an adder or the group of children who’d been caught the wrong side of the beach as the tide came in and been “…drooned, deid, aye, it’s a sair fecht.” My Nana had a host of these stories to cover just about any situation and she told them with spine chilling relish!

These warnings ringing in our ears, the uncles would revert to being ‘the boys’ and take us kids out and round the rocks as the tide went out. Only sissies might be scared by Nana’s stories and prefer to stay safe behind and that, of course, was unthinkable!  I trusted them to make sure we got back safe with time to spare. In later years I occasionally tried to stay behind with a book but was always chased off by my aunties. These expeditions gave ‘the lassies’ time to stop being our mothers, revert to sisterhood, sunbathe, fight and gossip without being overheard.

There were men fishing for salmon with nets strung out into the sea. There was one ice cream van where, if you were prepared to queue for long enough you could get a Mivi.


This is ‘the beach’ the one where I nearly got sunstroke, the one with a fresh water spring whose water tasted better than lemonade. The. Beach. All others since are judged against it and very few stand the comparison!

The photo is of the beach at Sandyhills. They have a lovely Facebook page, do give them a Like if you enjoy beach photos, red squirrels, badgers or you just remember your ‘beach’.

So where was yours anyway?

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