The Atlantic Ocean draws the Fairegarden clan to its sandy shores each year about this time. The endless horizon, bubbling tides, birds diving for fishy breakfast, lunch and dinners and the constant salt air breezes nourishes us.
Isle Of Palms near Charleston, South Carolina is the destination of the caravan that drives from the magic triangle to the end of dry land, to waters teaming with life.
Each morning I am the first one up, making coffee then trekking through the sand to the lapping waves. The ocean is both relaxing and energizing, a perfect example of yin and yang. Sometimes the cameras go along, but they are cumbersome and the aspired to shot of the sun breaking above the pier was missed every single day anyway. Tomorrow, she mutters, until the tomorrows run out.
On the last tomorrow, the sight was seen, sans camera of course, the giant orb rising in stripes of oranges and hot pinks, a watercolorist’ brush tinting the sand and ocean. A man was waist deep in water with a long lensed camera shooting the sight. I know he must have been pleased with the results, for the effect of the atmosphere on the scene was delicious.
The line of homes along the dunes gives landmarks to find the way back to our rental house that sits a couple of blocks back. The sequence of tan, pink, then lime green point the way to the access path.
An intact sand dollar, no longer moving about with the hair peds was put into the leg pocket of the cargo pants, precious cargo indeed. Two pieces of coral, yellow and a dark dull red were carried home as well. For years shells, stones, gifts from the sea went home with us until an epiphany of wisdom struck. All were returned from whence they came on the next year’s beach trip after the enlightenment. The sand dollar was given to an offspring of offspring, his father had found a couple more and added to his collection as well. The coral will be placed in a bowl, vase or basket, perhaps to be returned back to the shore in the future.
Speaking of the grands, the rate of growth on these yearly excursions is easy to note when perusing past posts. If interested, they can be found by clicking here-2008 and here-2009. The two eldest, M.A. and G.A., sons of Chickenpoet are now mature enough in size and mentality to go into the depths of the sea, one fishing and one floating, barely visible with toes and nose sticking out of the blue.
The whole clan loves the beach, loves the ocean, loves being out of doors, loves nature. Chickenpoet looks like a mermaid as she scoops the minnow net, serenity emanating from her contenance while she sits in the shallow breakers.
It gets more difficult to find a scheduled week for thirteen diverse lives to come together each year. This was a good year, much to our delight, for all were present and accounted for. From left: Gardoctor, Brokenbeat, Mrs. Brokenbeat, Chickenpoet, Mr. Chickenpoet, Fairegardener, Aunt Lynn (sister of The Financier), M.A., G.A., The Financier, Semi, LTB and Mr. Semi. Even taking a dozen shots, there will be some with eyes closed or other less than desirable facial antics. (Thanks to J. Fred for fine photographic work.)
Seeing the pelicans sailing along the water in formation has always been a thrilling and much anticipated sight while on vacation. This year the sight was bittersweet after seeing the images on television of oil covered feathers. In fact, everything about the beach was held more dear to the heart, fearing for its future. I will say no more here, keeping things light and happy, but there are sharp pangs of sadness that swell within. (Photo by Mr. Chickenpoet)
A day trip led to an adventure as the destination local farmer’s market proved illusive and we ended up many miles south on John’s Island. Rosebank Farm Market offered fresh fruits, vegetables, home made peach pie and the just missed hydrangea festival. We partook of the tour a few years ago with good friend Laurie, seeing more blooming hydrangeas than could be imagined and learning about growing them from the owner of this market, Sidi Limehouse.
Links to other beach vacation stories:
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