Owning a beach hut was something that I always wanted. Perhaps my fascination with the brightly coloured wooden huts is rooted in the fact that we don’t have them in Canada. When I visited a hut for the first time, back in 1998, the year I moved to the UK, well, I feel in love. The pastel colours, interiors decorated to perfection, hot doughnuts, ice cream, sandcastles, salty air and the roar of the sea. And yes, I did fall in love and marry the Englishman too.
I bought my beach hut, in October 2018. It was 17 months after my husband’s death. I suppose I was looking for things to help me smile again. The sea, the calm, the sun, and a bright red hut, a piece of home, was bound to help.
I was lucky enough to spot the hut for sale, buying it from a lovely family, complete with all of the history and originals paper for the hut, dating it back to the 1950’s. It was bright blue and in need of some TLC.
Painting it red was a simple choice.
It’s Canadian red and white, for a bit of home, fashioned on the iconic red and white barn on the farm. The maple leaf up top makes it easy to spot. There is no other hut quite like The Red Beach hut.
During lockdown (March -June 2020), I was forced to slow down. I realised that I started to give myself permission to stop and do nothing. And it was in those moments of doing nothing that I realised something. I could reimagine my life and fill it with the things that bring me joy.
I’m learning that the more we practice calming and settling our minds, the easier it becomes. While many enjoy the beach with family on the weekends, I also head there during the week. I’ve discovered running, yoga, pilates and early mornings at Walton, at the beach hut. These new rituals help me relax, declutter and smile more.
We can change our habits. We can slow down our busy minds. We can live a life full of joy if we open up to it.