It’s a narrow, rocky beach but nobody ever goes there so that’s where Didion goes when he wants to be alone which is most of the time ever since moving out to the coast anyway away from his parents and his friends and everyone who knew him. All he wants is to be left alone and to look at the water when the light is going out of the sky. There’s a parking lot off of Highway 6 that he leaves his car in and walks up away from the road because when people do come to the beach they usually don’t walk very far because it’s so rocky so he walks two or three miles just to be sure. In the summer he takes his shoes off and burrows his feet in among the gravel and the seaglass and pretends that he’s grown that way out of the beach like so much kelp.
One time he saw someone lying on the beach and he was going to just walk over them and pretend like he hadn’t seen anything and maybe walk another couple of miles but as he got closer he saw that it was a dead body that the gulls had gotten at so that was all right. It smelled heavy and terrible but that was okay it was all part of the larger beach smell rotten and stinking and wild and so he walked just a little bit farther and sat down and watched the water running up and down the beach until some police came out after the body and he had to leave. They wanted to talk to him about finding the body but all he wanted was to be left alone so he clammed up and pretended he was part of the beach and eventually they went away.