in this very present moment

6.4.20 ~ beach rose
Napatree Point Conservation Area, Watch Hill, Rhode Island

Along the shoreline, about 19 miles east of us, the waters of Fishers Island Sound give way to the the bigger waves of Block Island Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. When leaving Connecticut and arriving in Watch Hill, Rhode Island, the terrain and the beaches feel a lot more like Cape Cod to me. The irresistable desire to hear those waves crashing led me to drag Tim to Napatree Point Thursday morning and he was a good sport about a hike over the dunes.

Napatree Point is a slender, 1.5 mile long peninsula in Block Island Sound. To the north of the peninsula is Little Narragansett Bay, a small estuary into which the Pawcatuck River empties. The small bay is an inlet of the Atlantic Ocean.
~ Wikipedia

dunes

First we walked along the bay side, but not all the way to the end of the peninsula. The water was calm and there were lots of birds busy fishing and flying, but only one herring gull. He was quite handsome and paid no attention to us.

What is it with me and gulls? I won’t say how many pictures I wound up taking of this one. 🙂 But the sound of the waves on the ocean side was beckoning…

Time to take a shortcut over the dune. We made it across without encountering someone coming the other way. With COVID-19 ever on our minds we knew it would have to be a one-way-at-a-time bridge.

The waves were relatively calm, but bigger than the ones at our beach, and the sound of them crashing was soothing to me.

Atlantic Ocean!

Till my soul is full of longing
For the secret of the sea,
And the heart of the great ocean
Sends a thrilling pulse through me.

~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
(The Secret of the Sea)

Watch Hill Lighthouse on the point in the distance

There was a family with two children playing there on the beach. When we got closer the parents called the little ones back to their blanket and we hugged the water, putting as much distance between us as possible. We didn’t linger so the kids could quickly get back to their playing by the water. Life in the time of coronavirus.

I’ve been wrestling with several other concerns, though. Perhaps it’s stress, but my migraines have come back and have become very frequent, waking me up almost every night. Fortunately I have a stash of meds but I’m starting to worry I will blow through it before my next refill is due.

And then there is what I thought were spider bites I woke up with last Saturday morning. Mostly on my belly, a few on my face, and a couple of days later, a spot on my ankle. By the middle of the week I suspected flea bites or chigger bites. But the itching and rash now feels exactly like poison ivy. Which means I’ve got another week or two of this misery to live through. Probably picked it up in the woods on one of our walks. I think I will confine our walks to the cemetery and dirt roads for now.

Seeing the open ocean, hearing the waves, smelling the salty air, picking up a shell to remember the morning, all of it gave me some breathing space. Even the incessant itching seemed to stop for a while.

time to climb over the dune again

Try to be happy in this very present moment; and put not off being so to a time to come: as though that time should be of another make from this, which is already come, and is ours.
~ Thomas Fuller
(A Dictionary of Thoughts: Being a Cyclopedia of Laconic Quotations from the Best Authors of the World, Both Ancient & Modern)

This morning I read that headaches are one of the possible side effects of hydrocortisone cream, which I’ve been using on the poison ivy. Itching, too. So I’m going to stop using it for a while and see what happens. This too, will pass.

Watch Hill Lighthouse
looking back across Napatree Point from the top of the dune

I was very sorry to leave but very grateful to have enjoyed our moments there. On our way out we managed to stay far enough away from a couple of people arriving and exchanged greetings from behind our masks. “It’s the new way,” one man observed, as we all did our do-si-dos along the paths.

16 thoughts on “in this very present moment”

  1. You should look up seagull symbolism… I found this: “The seagull represents adaptability and resourcefulness, as well as opportunities and favorable circumstances. The seagull meaning focuses on the need to find ways to survive, and doing even the uncomfortable just to succeed, just like the dragonfly spirit animal.”

    1. Interesting, the connection between gulls and dragonflies! My gull friend with the mangled leg, who I’ve decided to call Captain, after all these years, is certainly a good example of one being who has found a way to survive with his affliction. I found this: “Seagulls are very protective of their family and close relationships, and there is a sense of really working together in order to go ahead and get the correct outcome and one that is going to prove to be beneficial to all.”

  2. I like your photos. They remind me how long it’s been since I’ve been on a beach. “It’s the new way” is a perfect phrase, isn’t it? So true.

    1. Thank you, Ally. Living by the sea is a blessing, for which I am always grateful. Yes, it is the perfect phrase. We will find ways to survive this “new way,” even if it does make us uncomfortable.

    1. Thank you for letting me know, Laurie. I enjoy so much taking the pictures and am grateful for the local scenery.

    1. Thank you, Markus & Micah! It’s nice that we can take the bridge over the dune without disturbing the shorebirds nesting in the vegetation on either side of it. After a tele-med visit with my doctor and getting a different med for my poison ivy I’m finally on the mend.

    1. Thank you so much, Otto. There is something very healing about being by the vastness of the sea and a long stretch of seashore…

  3. I so enjoyed being along on this vicarious visit to the Atlantic with you and your husband, Barbara. I’m always pleasantly struck by the huge difference between your Atlantic beaches and ours on the northern half of the Pacific. Beaches on the Atlantic are so long and vast, not rocky and craggy like the Pacific beaches I am familiar with.. This is a lovely beach park, great photos of the waters, gull, wild grasses, and expansive vistas. I’m glad the beach visit brought you joy.

    1. Thank you, Jet. One day I’d love to see the Pacific Ocean and its rocky, craggy beaches. I’ve seen pictures and documentaries and am fascinated by the wildlife similarities and differences on our opposite coastlines. About 20 years ago, while on a family history research trip, we finally got to see a glimpse of Lake Ontario and I marveled at how it looked like the ocean but smelled like a pond! Travel is difficult for me and I haven’t made it too far west. But I do love touring the natural world vicariously with you and Athena on your blog. Hope your ankle is improving!

    1. Barefoot is the way to go — until the sand gets too hot in the summer sunlight! Sometime in August…

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