We wander along the beach and watch the sky change. We sit on grass above the sand sipping on passionfruit Rekorderlig, clumsily opened with a two dollar bottle opener.
The beach is painted in black and white, its usual gold and blues stolen by the night. Even the sound of the waves seem muted. It is so dark in front of us, but our foreground is dominated by the white shore. The lighthouse flashes in the distance, its beam stretching to distances my mind couldn’t grasp.
Earlier we walked up there and reached the most Eastern point in Australia. The ocean, gloriously blue during the afternoon, took up most of my view. I got lost in that blue. I focused on the significance of it, rather than the insignificance of myself.
Our first day in Byron Bay I had been surprisingly imitated by the sea – the waves were too big for me to swim in. Later I would face them in a surf lesson. As I walked along the sea the first day, I had no idea how much I’d enjoy learning how to surf. Or how I’d face kayaking again in an attempt to see dolphins.
During that first morning I was happy to simply soak in the views: the lighthouse on the green slope in the distance, the curve of the white sands and the pale blue waves pressing into those curves. I laid down on the beach. The sun warmed my skin – the cosy of kind of warmth, the kind you get before falling asleep.
Whereas now there is a slight chill in the coastal evening air. As I look at the flashing beam of the lighthouse, I contemplate the thought that tomorrow I am continuing up the East coast, solo.
But tonight, my friend from home is still here. We talk, our words like the waves – flowing and natural. I am warm, despite the slight chill, with ciders and the contentment at having a friend who would come across the world to see me.