Walking on the beach I meet a man who lives across the bay. He's come around to take his wife to hospital.
'She's there for an hour and a half each day for radiotherapy,' he says, 'so I walk the dog on the beach.'
'Oh, that's ideal,' I say.
(Pause as what I've said sinks in.)
'No, wait, I didn't mean it's ideal that she's having radiotherapy ...'
Anyway before that we'd been discussing plastic. Remembering the FaceBook post that is doing the rounds - pick up three pieces of plastic each time you visit the beach - I was duly collecting it. Although it's impossible to stop at three when you start noticing it. Thank goodness for poo bags - even though they're plastic.
The gentleman said they had much more on the beach across the bay but they didn't have such large shells or seaweed. I expect it's all to do with tides, currents and winds. I should know really being an oceanographer ...
Perhaps unsurprisingly after such a cold day yesterday there was a large patch of broken-up ice on the beach. It has to be very cold for the sea to freeze.