I've traveled the world and seen sunsets in various Europe, Asia, and Middle Eastern countries; and I've seen sunsets from the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans, as well as the Mediterranean, Red, Norwegian, Greenland, Java, and South China Seas. I've seen a lot of beautiful and amazing sunsets, but out of all these sunsets, in all of these different places, there are only maybe 5 or 6 that I have considered to be amazingly epic and absolutely stunning.
I've said it before, but out of all the places I've been, Southern California has some of the best sunsets.
A few Saturday's ago, my family and I headed out to take our annual photo for our Christmas card. Each year, we try to do something a little different, and this year we decided to head down to the rocks on the beach just north of Scripps Pier.
We knew the sunset would be pretty good with the clouds hanging out in the sky, and with low tide and sunset coinciding nicely with each other, we figured there wasn't a better time to get the photo we wanted.
We got to the area we wanted. I set up my camera equipment and we got to taking our family photos pretty quick knowing that the little man's attention span fizzle out and he'd be sandier than a baby sea turtle pretty quickly. (btw have you seen the baby sea turtles after they hatch? super cute!!)
As the sun dipped lower and lower, quickly nearing the the horizon, I watched the clouds and the colors in the sky; I knew we were in for an epic sunset. I just didn't realize at the time just how epic it was going to be.
As I packed up most of my camera gear to begin the trek back to the car, I kept my camera out to capture the amazing sunset as I walked.
With the clouds glowing beautiful yellows, oranges, and reds, I took a few photos of the cloudscape as it reflected on the wet sand near the water's edge. Reflections like these always captivated me, and I was ecstatic to see these amazing clouds nearly perfectly reflected.
As I neared Scripps Pier, I slowed my pace to fully enjoy and take in the sight before me. The sunset's colors had transitioned to these beautiful and deep purples, pinks, and orange/reds. The interspersed cloud covering allowed the waning sun to light up the sky enough to reveal these beautiful pockets of light blue showing through. And then to top it off, the wet sand provided an amazingly beautiful reflection of the colored sky with the silhouette and shadow of the pier showing so clearly.
It was an absolutely amazing scene!!
I moved slowly closer to the pier, stopping momentarily and often to capture a couple of shots until I was close enough to the pier. By this point the sun was nearly set, and the last rays of light were shining brightly upon the clouds amplifying the orange and pink colors. The pier was silhouetted and its pylons were beautifully reflected in the wet sand; and the pier itself seemed to act as this dividing line, dividing the colors of the sky with the blue and purples above and the reds, pinks, and bright oranges below.
Enthralled by the amazing beauty before me I had to take a few seconds to just enjoy the magnificent view in front of me before I composed my final photograph for the evening.
I wasn't the only one in awe by this sunset. My little man who is almost 4 years old has been begging to go back to the beach to to watch another sunset. He absolutely loves the beach, the ocean, and probably most of all the sand, but he has never before asked to go just to watch the sunset. For me, this not only makes my heart soar, but it solidifies my opinion that this was, without a doubt, one of the most amazing and epic sunsets I had ever seen - definitely ranking in the top 5 of all sunsets I've seen all over the world.
I write this blog post not to only tell you about all of the sunsets I've seen, or how epic this sunset in particular was, but to help you see the amazing beauty in the world around us. When a child of not quite 4 years old sees the amazing beauty in a sunset and is captivated by colors, clouds, and reflection just as much as I am, it makes me think just how much of the world's beauty we take for granted or only give a passing thought to.
There is amazing beauty in the world around us. Too often, like recurring moments in our daily life we overlook the significance and amazing-ness of the things around us. How much more full and awesome would our lives be, if could open ourselves to seeing the "ordinary" world around us. I ask myself how often I've watched the sunset and truly marveled at its beauty, or watched birds wheel through the sky and wondered at their amazing feats of flight, or even given a second glance to the honey bee flitting from flower to flower content with it's business of being a worker bee?
There is amazing and beautiful things all around us, if only we open our eyes to see it. And I hope that my wife and I are doing all we can to help our son see it, experience it, and truly appreciate it.