I have a few friends, homeschooling moms, with whom I meet a few times a year for dinner and lots of chatting. The last time we went out to dinner and found ourselves not wanting to leave and go home, Mary suggested we meet at her shore house one night and have a sleepover. That way we could chat all night if we wanted. So Thursday was the night and Karen and I went down. Liz couldn't make it. We went out to eat. I had salmon oscar and there was so much absolutely delicious "oscar" I never got to the salmon. We shared a carafe of chianti...I got awesome crab bisque...and Mary served cheesecake back home to munch while we talked and talked... till my eyes were closing on the couch and I gave up around 2 am. I love talking with these ladies. They make me feel sane and normal in this crazy world.
When you travel to the shore in south Jersey, you will most likely pass this thing. It is a hubcap tree, as you can plainly see. It's been there for as long as I can remember, back into my childhood. Yes! They sell hubcaps!
But the marshes are my favorite. Breathing in marsh air is like saline for the soul. When I was younger, the closer you got to the marsh and the shoreline, the more the air burned your eyes, it was so thick with salt and marsh gases. Now, the smell isn't so strong. I always roll down the window as I pass by. There's something about the marshland that never fails to make me think of New Jersey indians. I believe they were some of the most lucky Americans. New Jersey had great land and opportunity for native Americans and the early settlers. Marshes, ocean, pinelands, woods, rivers, sand, mountainous area... My grandfather, who lives in these parts and has his whole life, gave my oldest son his arrowhead collection. 180 of them that he picked up while plowing fields in south Jersey. Along with a few larger tools. I love imagining this land with those people living off it.
Here is a look south as I head over the bridge to Ocean City.
They are building a new bridge, I believe. These cranes had flags flying from them at half staff. A closer look revealed Virginia Tech flags hanging below many of them. As we left for dinner, the sun was setting and this was quite a site from the other side of the inlet. Unfortunately my camera was at Mary's place.
You can't go up on the boardwalk without at least considering buying a box of fudge or salt water taffy. Or caramel popcorn, or some Mack & Manco pizza or...
When I was born, my parents lived near here. My dad used to push me in the stroller on the boardwalk. Actually, the story is that he'd let my stroller go on its own down the boardwalk ramps and my mother told me that's why I had such big eyes as a child.
At any rate, there is something about traveling down here that's a little like home to me. Maybe everyone feels like that at the shore, breathing in that air and looking off over a horizon of water. I love gazing over the water.