My Sanctuary Under The Open Sky

14 Feb

If you expected consistency from me, then I’m sorry to disappoint but things don’t work like that over here. Sure, I will eventually get around to telling you more about Canada but for today’s Travelling Thursday I take you with me to one of the most special places there is – at least for me.

For as long as I can remember, I spent one holiday every year at the North Sea on one of those islands and most times I ended up on Amrum. It’s one of the bigger North Frisian Islands and the happy place I go to in my mind when I need a distraction from reality. My family spent so many vacations there, I know the island very well. I’ve been there for Easter, New Year’s, fall but only once during summer because then it’s overrun by tourists which is just not a pretty sight. I don’t like sharing my little sanctuary with thousands of other people, I prefer the solitude of off seasons.


I love the ocean or really any big space of open water – probably because I grew up around it, water and sand beneath my feet and the ever blowing wind in my hair. The play of high and low tide, water that is always in motion, waves crashing down on the beach. I’ve never felt closer to nature than on a beach with the crashing waves and wind singing their infinite duet. It doesn’t get much better than this because it’s raw and uncensored but still so beautiful.


The number of books I read while being on the beach of that island I cannot even count but it’s what my dreams are made of. Those simpler times, when it was just Mom, me and a book of my choice, together on the beach, forgetting all the troubles around me, reading till my eyes hurt.


I’ve built sandcastles when I was younger or dug holes. Collected sea shells. Had my bare legs assaulted by sand storms. Landed in shallow waters in attempts to jump over puddles and ended with my shoes drenched in salt water. Walked miles on that beach in either direction without a destination just walking for walking’s sake. Cut my feet on broken sea shells.


The sunsets on Amrum are some of the happiest moments stored away in my memory. Usually there are not a lot of people around in the evenings and those that are, are scattered far enough to no bother me much. When it wasn’t cold, I liked to sit on one of the benches that were up a little higher in the dunes. When I closed my eyes, it was like I was the only person on earth. Nature drowning out all noises. Just me and the sea. Winds tugging at my long hair but it’s secured in a ponytail. And then watching the colour of the sky change, seeing its reflection in the wet sand. Breathing in the salty air and I’m never more at peace than in that exact moment.


I long to go back but I’m also dreading it because it will never be the same, knowing that Mom is not waiting back in the hotel room for me. It’s too early to go back to the place that is so filled with memories.


While nurturing my dreams of becoming a writer I thought that if I ever managed to become one, I’d had to rent a small house on Amrum to write. Whenever I got stuck in my story, I could go out, take a walk on the beach and let the winds blow my mind back into perspective. I know it’s not too late for it and somewhere in the back of my mind, I’m not letting this dream starve completely. It’s just not yet the right time for it but when it is, I’ll have to return to my sanctuary that is an island in the North Sea.


All of the above pictures were taken by me.


13 Responses to “My Sanctuary Under The Open Sky”

  1. Addie February 22, 2013 at 07:10 #

    “I’d had to rent a small house on Amrum to write” – exactly what I’d do, too. Hopefully, in time, when memories don’t pain you anymore.

    • Wilhelmina Upton February 22, 2013 at 11:13 #

      Yes, some time in the not so distant future I need to get back there because I miss it. A lot.

  2. Ashley Hufford February 21, 2013 at 05:33 #

    I love these photos. There is nothing so calming as waves on the beach.

  3. Jacqui February 17, 2013 at 10:13 #

    Wow! To pretty :)
    Loving the pictures!

  4. viveka February 14, 2013 at 17:41 #

    Arunm is an German North Sea Island …. but it’s very close to Denmark, if I’m not too off.
    Same with Sylt .. it has those long white sandy beaches too. I understand you find yourself here. I my sanctuary in France, in Biarittz. A wonderful post.

    • Wilhelmina Upton February 14, 2013 at 17:43 #

      You’re absolutely correct. Viewed from Denmark Amrum is a south of Sylt. And yes, the beach is incredible.

      I’ve never been to France, well not really. I was in St. Tropez once but I can’t remember it.

      • viveka February 14, 2013 at 17:47 #

        Biarritz is on the Atlantic coast .. near the Spanish border. Here is my post about it … – truly stunning place.

  5. cupitonians February 14, 2013 at 16:59 #

    Oh this is beautiful! I really want to go there now! I can almost imagine you holidaying there. Looks very Zen and laid back!

  6. AngO February 14, 2013 at 15:24 #

    It looks so beautiful and peaceful.

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