S Sense

The salty air of beautiful Broadwater beach. Aaah.

Im at peace in this wild beautiful place. Occasionally I bend down (Im no Laurie Axtens but I can bend) and collect shells.

Soldier crabs scuttle through their crab colonies diving down holes as I approach. I avoid walking through these colonies. I dont want to crush them.

A sea eagle hovers above me looking to see if I might flush some tasty tidbit from among the shells, crab colonies, driftwood, bits of broken plastic, disposable cigarette lighters, empty Tooheys New stubbies, empty plastic water bottles, a dead bird with fishing line around its legs and a toothbrush, which make up the latest tidal gurgitation.

Inspired by my shells, I make a tower of sand, place the seashells on it in a series of peace signs and then plant the toothbrush on top like a flag mast. Then I carefully lay rubbish, colour co-ordinated, around that. (I havent got a lot on today.)

Detouring around a soldier crab colony I walk across the erotically-shaped, sea-sculptured, soft chocolate rocks which are so much a feature of the beach around here. (Yes. I find the chocolate rocks of Broadwater erotic. The sea carves sensuous shapes. But dont worry. I have a girlfriend. Again.)

Its just a perfect day, as Lou Reed might say. And Im not even drunk. (A vodka and orange juice for brekkie doesnt count.)

Then behind me I hear a rumble. Its a 4WD. On the friggin beach. This refugee from a deceitful ad campaign mounts the soft chocolate rock, crushing a womans hips, before flopping once again onto the sand. I yell in horror.

As it drives past me roaring across my soldier crab colony, the driver waves his Tooheys New at me and laughs. Like hes never seen a man in floral boxers and cowboy hat grieving for a crushed sexy rock and standing next to, well, a sand phallus with a tootbrush poking out the top.

As it bounces down the beach over rock, crab, pippie, shell, bird nest, kid and sleeping sunbather, I race to where the monster has Iraqed the crab colony. Two tyre tracks have compressed the sand at least four inches. In this colony alone I estimate that at least a hundred crab homes were destroyed. Now Im angry. Okay mister, they may be called soldier crabs but theyre civilians!

I frantically start to dig into a tyre track. There may be crabs trapped below ground. I wish Eddie McGuire was here. I want to find a hero. After minutes of digging I do find a crab.

Unfortunately, its dead. That means its not a hero. So I chuck it away. (The sea eagle turns an eye to it.)

I continue to dig. After a minute and three more dead victims, I give up. I dont like the beach anymore. The crushed rocks dont look attractive. Dead crabs make me depressed. Im suddenly thirsty and only have water with me. And I can see more 4WDs coming. Bye bye beach.

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