With precious little time to paint lately, I decided that just playing and splashing paint about in the 20 minutes is far better than doing nothing at all. So with the prompt of “sand,” I let my mind wander a bit and it took me to the beach that I wish I were sitting on and was kind enough to serve me a much needed drink. It’s been years since I sat on a beach enjoying a lovely frozen drink. I honestly think it’s been more than a decade now. I don’t live remotely near one, so I have to make a very special trip. I’ve managed to stroll Santa Monica beach, but only on a break from work and never with enough time to enjoy it properly. Beach vacations are the best, though, because they can often involve so little of actually doing anything at all. To simply spend a day doing nothing much, except enjoying the sound of waves and a lovely icy red drink is truly a wonderful experience. Most of the time, I feel like I’m hurrying on to the next thing, so to have that wonderful feeling of time standing still is probably the best feeling in the world.
I’ve mentioned my desire to visit a beach and spend some quality time there quite a few times since I started this blog. Yet, I’ve still not managed to make this particular dream come true. Schedules and trips to other places always seem to get in the way. Life always seems to have a way of reversing your plans and deciding an entirely different path. I’m not too worried, though, as I hope that I still have a bit of time. But, still, I often wonder if the things I’m choosing to make happen are actually the things that I need most. Perhaps, that beach vacation is the best thing in the world for me right now. Or, perhaps, it’s not. How do we know when the thing we’re dreaming about is THE thing and not just some idle fantasy? In truth, I couldn’t possibly pursue all of my dreams. There are simply too many of them. So, I usually just ask myself the same question. “What would I most regret not doing?” Sometimes, my answer surprises me.
Life is a wonderful journey and dreams are such a fabulous part of it. I spend many days staring into the sky, searching for answers and ideas there. Each cloud tells me nothing, of course, other than that one that looks way too much like a squirrel and is ridiculously distracting. But that moment of calm, just losing myself in the great “what if” is a wonderful time of reflection. I feel like the real goal in life isn’t to pursue dreams, but to let the dreams that matter most pursue you. Those nagging thoughts that simply won’t be quieted, no matter how many frozen red drinks you may have. These are the thoughts that demand to be heard. And, I always choose to listen closely. Even if many of the other dreams float off into the clouds, I take these persistent dreams very seriously. They have to have their chance. These are the things that I’ll regret most if I don’t give them a chance to happen. In the end, it can be something as crazy as the new plans I’ve made for this site, or something as deliciously simple as having drinks on the beach.
About the Doodlewash
M. Graham Watercolors: Cobalt Teal, Pyrrol Red, Gamboge, Permanent Green Pale, Burnt Sienna and Cobalt Blue. Alvin Draft-Matic Mechanical Pencil in an A6 Hahnemühle Watercolor Book.
Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!