We never visit. We return. We absorb the place. It is in our bones. A gentle curve of land surrounded by sand. Beckoning us. Home.
We know the beaches just by touch. Course-grained Porthmeor, veined with black and shell. Porthgwidden, every peeking rock familiar. Porthminster, silky between toes and fingers. The harbour, always a port in a storm with its shifting, golden sands.
We navigate by landmarks. No, not just by the Tate or Fore Street, but by our memories shared. There is no such thing as a bench with a view. It is the bench. Where the ice cream parlour was. The one where we did this, or she painted. The one she loved, when she was still with us.
Oh, but we also revel in the present! We look for the pointing fingers and turned heads that announce a head-bobbing seal. Roll with the changing buildings of our haven, be they in hue or purpose. Uncross our fingers when the misty, silvered mornings burn away in sunshine, and that indescribable blue blooms.
We yearn to be there again. We all burn to go back, and dread the wrench of leaving. Gaze at pictures and photographs until we can drink in the real thing. Our paradise.