It's early, dark, and cold. The weather man has predicted clear skies, and this seasons first frost. Heading down a steep hill towards the ocean, your brakes screech. You hope that they are not loud enough to wake the sleeping houses that you pass.
Other than the occasional reflective striped jogger, and dog walker, there is no one else populating this eerie world. The sunrise colors the sky to the east, casting a dim glow that makes it hard to see the slippery frost covered wooden pier that you are walking on.
You give up on the pier, and head over the frosty sea washed stones of the beach. There you quietly crunch down towards the water, making your way across the low tide beach.
Walking slowly, due to the lack of light, you do not disturb the sea birds, and the the absolutely huge and magnificent blue heron, The warbling wonnnnnoook of the Canada Geese, makes your breath catch in awe. The light evens out, and it is time to take photos.
As you pick your way through the increasing light, you realize that leaving the rubber boots in the car trunk was not a good idea. Because the numb feeling in your hands may be from the frost, but the coldness in your feet, is from the incoming tide that has just washed over your shoes.
Avoiding the large translucent mounds of jelly fish marooned on the sand, you easily mistake a coating of sand for frost. And marvel at the utterly alien shape of them. They have not been picked clean like the unfortunate crab shells scattered around.
Suddenly there is a slight warmth in the air, and a very bright ball of light. You come to the conclusion that this is the reason they tell you not to shoot into the sun. Besides blowing out the expensive sensor in your camera, latent sun spots in your vision make it hard to see the sand. And harder to avoid the puddles of seawater that have now seeped into your last good pair of shoes.
All this doesn't matter as the heron takes flight, disturbed by your movements. You try to capture his flight on film, but he proves too powerful and fast. The sun rises so quickly over the trees, that you can actually see it moving. It makes you feel like you are on a camera expedition in some exotic location. The sea birds chirping, and the whirling of wings creates a lump in your throat.
You are grateful that your shoes seem salvageable, and your camera still works. You also know, that this may not be a exotic and unusual place, but it is a special place, and it is home.