When I moved to Norwich for work in 2002 I had only visited a couple of times before (and one of those was on a school trip) so, as with everywhere else I had lived, I saw getting to know a new city and county as an exciting part of the adventure.
Initially, because I didn’t know anyone either, I wandered about quite happily on my own but I was very lucky to make friends at work and soon I didn’t just have company but, as many of them were from Norfolk, insider information too.
While we are surrounded by beautiful countryside, historic buildings, visitor attractions and beaches to die for, my friends took me to the places they enjoyed as locals rather than as tourists.
One such place was Waxham Beach, which you would only ever find if you were looking specifically for it. There is no car park, no sign posts and no amenities (or phone reception) – just the pure experience of sand, sea and hopefully sun.
I love this beach, although, to be fair, I love most beaches, but this one has always felt special – like I’d been given a key to unlock a secret door.
Now she is a little better at travelling in the car, yesterday we took Freya there for the first time.
I filled her bucket with sea water, sunk it into the sand and she spent the next hour playing a game that involved plopping in big stones and washing them clean only to then put them back on the sand and start the process again.
There was a commentary that went along with it and every so often we would be gifted a wet stone but for the most part she was in her own happy little world.
Freya isn’t an outsider, unlike her dad and I, she was born in Norfolk and I like the fact that she will know this beach as a local knows it but I wonder if it will feel special to her or if she will need to find her own place where she fits? I don’t feel particularly attached to anywhere in my home county, although there are many wonderful areas to visit.
Maybe I just found this spot at the right time in my life and that’s why it’s special to me? Even after 13 years I wouldn’t consider myself a local, but it’s nice to feel like I am in the right place and maybe that I belong here. Do you feel like you belong where you live? Is it an attachment to a particular place or maybe the people you are with?
12 thoughts on “Finding that special place where you feel you belong.”
Born and bred in the same town I still live in. Whilst I love our general area, my little part of it so much. I love the idea of placing down new roots somewhere special but doubt that will ever happen…ooh to live by the coast somewhere in Norfolk….I can but dream!
We have the same dream. We even tried to get a mortgage recently after seeing this place http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-35591826.html I was already imagining walking on the beach every day (with a little dog) and Freya and watching storms rolling in from the sea from the comfort of the pale grey almost white living room 🙂 Sadly we couldn’t get anywhere near that figure which is probably a blessing as it needs a lot of work and I actually like living in the city. Hehe
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Dog is absolutely part of that lifestyle! 🙂
I would miss Cambridge and Ely a lot but sure I would cope! 🙂
I’m sure it will still be special to her regardless, as you will no doubt you’ll share many wonderful memories there.xx
I hope so, thanks Sandy 🙂 I hope you had a good weekend. Is it your op this week?
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Yes we did thanks hon. What about you guys did you have a good weekend? Yes it’s on Friday.xx
I left home at 16 in part to get away from the small town where I’d spent most of my childhood, but like so many people I know, returned here with my own children, because it is a fantastic place to bring them up. I feel very rooted here now, but that is nearly all about people, In terms of place, I too would love to live by the sea, and when I’m homesick it’s usually for Crete, where I lived for a couple of years as a young adult. By the way, we had an evening out in Norwich last week, and loved it. I spend a lot of time at UEA but not that much in the city, and it impressed me greatly.
I bet living on Crete was amazing, I’ve only ever seen photos but it looks beautiful. Funny how we all want to live by the sea.
I’m so pleased you had a nice time. I know I blather on about Norwich but I really do think it’s a fine city 🙂
I read this beautiful post this morning Tara but didn’t have time to comment. I have been thinking about it all day (as well as work in case my employer is reading ha). It looks like a beautiful beach and what a magical place for Freya to spend her summery childhood days. We lived away for a while and now that we have returning to the same, wider area so not exactly our childhood town, I love it and realised I missed it so much. I love the beach too but sometimes you do just find a special one xx
As you know I love my adopted home and even with everything that has happened this definitely feels like home. When I do go back to Cheshire, yes it’s brilliant seeing all my friends and family, but I just don’t feel at home there, I wish I could just pick everyone up and plonk them up here 🙂
One day I would love to retire by the sea, there really is something magical about it, and I suspect Freya will get that feeling as she gets older and find it mesmerising, and even if that particular beach isn’t her special place, she’ll find one! Tell her lots of stories of brave fishermen, sea creatures and mermaids, that’ll definitely do the trick 🙂