For me, sandcastles were never about the sand.
Or even the castle for that matter.
What does that leave? The water. I loved playing in the sand at the beach because of the water. It wasn’t because I liked watching the castle get destroyed by the water, although that played a role, but I liked building things in the sand to control and shape the water.
Building a wall to protect my castle from the waves. A moat around the castle to fill up with water. Tunnels and ramps for the water to go through.
It was hypnotic watching the water move through and around the sand. Taking away parts of the castle a little bit at a time, small bites. The water was alive. It seemed to know right where my defenses were weakest. Unrelenting.
The water was infinite. It never ran out of energy. It never ran out of reinforcements to lay siege to the castle. And as I looked out onto the ocean, the water went on forever.