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Horseshoe Magazine

Horseshoe Magazine

Salt in my Soul

Pexels/Alexey Sinelnikov

The smell of salt-saturated air permeates my nose. When you first breathe it in, there is a hint of bitterness, a sour scent. After a moment, it begins to bring feelings of warmth and familiarity. This smell hits me as I step out into the parking lot of a cedar shake-shingled Subway Sandwich Shop, a place I have seen every August from the day I was born.

If you drive a little closer to where the sand meets the water, the faint scent of salt becomes stuck to the windshield. When you activate your wipers, your view of the thrashing water will become streaky. Upon dipping yourself beneath the waves, the salt you smell will be caught in your hair, tangling each strand intricately, sticking to your skin after you exit, and healing all wounds.

This smell is specific to this beach, where I’ve come for over 20 years, where my family has come together, fallen apart, and found our way again, and where I’ve left my troubles on the Bourne Bridge and picked them back up on the Sagamore.

It’s important to who I’ve become, the kind of person I am and the things that bring me peace. The relationship between my family that has been torn and resewn on that sand that has delivered me here. I wonder who I would be without this place. Would I have this gaping pit inside of unknown peace? Could I ever find it somewhere else? Am I missing something inside me now, something I could have found somewhere else? Is there someone I could have found somewhere else?

Somehow, these questions escape me when I sit parked in my beach chair. I don’t think it’s the sun or the overworking of my muscles as I cut through the crashing waves. I know what I can chalk it up to. It’s the scent. The air. The salt that rushes into my lungs when my feet hit the sand covered pavement. The salt that steals the sourness away.

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