Garapan, Saipan. 4:30 p.m. 08/04/2012.
I think at this point in my career I’ll rethink my definition of a perfect Saturday afternoon.
As I write this, I’m sitting on an empty stretch of beach right off Beach Road.
It’s not the kind of beach where tourists go to spend a day. It’s only about fifteen feet off the road, a bit cluttered with small rocks and sea glass. There are banana, pine, and plumeria trees behind me and blue-green-navy-teal-turquoise glassy waters ahead. I can see the military ships stationed off the coast and white caps in the distance where the open sea’s breakers fold over the coral reef.
There’s a big boomerang-shaped cloud bank headed my way, followed by what looks like a smoky veil of rain showers slipping over the waters.
A few minutes ago, a stick-thin local man walked by with a gauzy fishing net slung over his shoulder. He bared his teeth at me in a huge smile when his eyes met mine. Cast his net into the shallows, then pulled it in as though through molasses before continuing around the curve of the beach. Staring at the shore as though something precious was to be found there.
Maybe there was.