Why are so many of us drawn to the sunrise?
Is it simply to enjoy the burst of color that often accompanies the dawn of a new day? Or is it something more? (We could say the same thing of course about the sunset.)
This past weekend, the Bolejack family went to the beach for a couple of days, and on Sunday morning, my daughter and I got up to watch the sunrise. OK, I got up and then prodded my still-teen daughter out of bed.
Kristin and I we were hardly alone in waiting for Sunday’s sunrise. From the balcony of our hotel, I could see the man with a camera mounted on a tripod. I know why he was there – to capture the brilliance of the sunrise. My daughter and I snapped photos too, and years ago, my wife and I drove to the coast early one morning just to watch the sun come up, me with camera in hand.
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But what about the others on the beach last Sunday morning? What about the young family of four sitting sitting side by side on a beach towel on the sand? Perhaps mom and dad, too busy during the work week, wanted their young children to appreciate the beauty that nature serves up daily.
Or what about the young couple standing not far from the family of four? I imagined they saw a parallel between the start of a new day and the start of their lives together.
I was curious too about the woman sitting alone with cellphone camera in hand. Was she like me, usually content to let the family sleep while she started her day quietly, peacefully? Or was she there remembering sunrises she had shared with a recently departed loved one?
And what about the two young women standing at the edge of the surf? Sisters perhaps. Or maybe longtime friends who were spending their last beach week together before heading their separate ways to college.
Personally, I have always found the beach, even amid the crowds of summer, to be a peaceful place, the rhythm and sound of the crashing surf a natural stress reliever.
It’s even better at sunrise, when the stress relief comes with a quiet burst of color. Apparently, my daughter and I aren’t the only ones who think so.