By: Blonde One

4.30 am might seem like an insignificant time to the uninitiated. It might just seem like a ridiculous time to be awake to many. But to me, 4.30 am holds a special place in my heart (kind of). 4.30 is the time that I stir from my tent on a Ten Tors training weekend to have a quick wee behind a bush without being disturbed by the group of teenagers that I have brought along. Their alarm call is 5am and from that time there is no quiet corner away from anyone else. 4.30 am is also the time that my alarm goes off on Ten Tors weekend itself so that I can have half an hour before the ‘call to arms’ is sounded over the tannoy in the form of Chariots of Fire. This half an hour is spent spending a penny in the delightful portaloo (with no queue) and then helping to get breakfast ready.

My alarm went off recently at 4.30 am for an entirely different reason. After lockdown restrictions were eased a little and we were allowed to travel to exercise, I decided to get up early to go for a walk on the beach and watch the sunrise. The sun rose over Teignmouth at 5.20 am so I wanted to be there in plenty of time. It was just glorious! The clouds did a good job of hiding some of the sun but the effect was just breathtaking. I spend several hours wandering on the beach and still got home in time to begin teaching at 8.30. It really was the perfect beginning to what turned out to be a really good day!

The beach was calm and empty, the water was still and gentle and my mind wandered along to the rhythm of the waves. If you have never been tempted to get up and watch the sunrise, do it now. I promise you won’t regret it!