Luisana Reyes Madera



Beach Day

Last Monday, I returned from my trip back home. I was in Caracas for a month and a half. I had not been back in four years out of the six I’ve lived in Canada, so it was shocking at first but beautifully eye opening. Getting to hang out with my family was the ultimate prize after enduring a solo immigrant life at such a young age. I have this specific memory that summarizes the state of extreme happiness I was in during the trip. I decided I’d share it with you:

My brother and I arrived at the beach and immediately decided to go for a swim after downing our ham, cheese, and mayo sandwiches. We tiptoed as soon as our toes touched the water. It felt ice cold, but in hindsight I think it wasn’t. It just felt like it in contrast to the scorching hot sand. Sometimes things are not but feel like they are.

We unanimously decided it was time to dive in, mostly because a wave taller than the both of us was approaching. We swam under it. I came back up for air and saw my brother’s silhouette as the sun was right behind him. I could not really see his face, but I instinctively knew he was smiling, giggling— maybe because I was, too. Everything sparkled and the sea seemed to be covered in glitter. The sun was beaming high and my eyelashes were filled with salt. We chatted a bit in-between, and pointed out how wonderful the day was, how pleasant the waves felt, and how much fun it was to be at the beach. We walked to the sand and sat on our towels. I drank the coldest beer I have ever had in my life.

We later returned to the sea and spent an hour playing around the waves. We would lift our arms and ‘jump’ them. It looked funny, but it, for a moment, made us feel like we were floating in the air— which was liberating. After almost an hour of play, our mom signalled from the shore that it was time to go. We were suddenly two kids getting dragged out of something they wish they could do forever. It feels like together, we will always stay children, even though he is now 16 and I am 23.

When we got out, everything was packed, so we put on our sandals and walked to the car. My brother had recently lost a necklace he treasured, so we briefly stopped at a sea-side market on the way back to the city to try to find a replacement for it. Our bodies were exhausted from fighting the waves. We slept the whole way, and magically awoke when we entered our building. That felt like time travel, which is something I wish I could do right now. Because I will forever long to relive this day over and over again.