Friday, 12 June 2015

Sand Dunes

Cae’r Ffynnon lay on the unfashionable north side of the north end of North Parade, Borth. To the south lay the seaside village of Borth, to the west a shingle bank provided inadequate protection from the sea, east was the marsh of Cors Fochno, drained by the Afon Leri, and to the north were the great sand dunes of Ynys Las. 

In those days laughter and tears were free; everything else was rationed. That included parental blessings. My father’s parents rejoiced that their son John had survived the war, found a lovely bride, reclaimed the place at university that Hitler had denied him, and that the happy pair had brought forth a son.

However, my mother’s parents were aghast that their daughter Freda had joined the army, married a soldier, moved to an altogether inaccessible and probably uncivilized part of mid-Wales and then, with no discernable income, roof, or prospects, started a family.  The young parents were frequently and roundly chided for their irresponsibility. Visits to that parental home were tense and tearful.
But back in Wales things were different. Alone with her child the young mother could be young again. The pram would be pushed to the sand dunes of Ynys Las. Panting with youthful energy she would tow it to the top and there soak in the sun-bright view and forget the past. The blue sky reflected in blue waters. A fresh breeze off the sea dried her tears. The sea itself called. She listened to the music of wind and wave and sang secret songs to the beckoning ocean. Soon the coach built pram was careering down the dunes towards the sea in a shower of sand and laughter, and the carefree joy of young motherhood.

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