At the beginning of every month, I set about writing a post for this blog. I don’t get paid – it’s truly a labor of love. There are plenty of wonderful things about Martha’s Vineyard, so there is no shortage of topics to write about. Still, I often find myself conflicted about what my subject matter will be from month to month.
At the start of 2011 (one’s are wild as I write this – it’s 1/1/11) you’d think that the anxiety would be intensified, what with this being the commencement of a new year and all. Yet because of today’s unusual events, it became one of my easiest tasks to date.
My family and I spent several days of the Christmas/New Year holiday break on Martha’s Vineyard, enjoying our home at the Edgartown Residence Club. Thankfully, we arrived after the “Blizzard of 2010”, which turned out to be more of a bust than a blizzard where I live. Each day after our arrival, the temperature increased. I was able to spend several hours out on the deck reading in the sunshine. Bliss. But it was about to get better.
By Saturday, New Year’s Day, the virtual mercury had soared to the sunny mid-50’s. Unable to resist the lure of the unseasonably high temperatures, our crew headed – where else – for South Beach. As we approached the coast, the temperature dropped by a degree every few hundred feet we drove. By the time we hit sand, it was downright brisk, but our excitement had not cooled off at all.
This was an exceptional opportunity. I took advantage of the moment by removing my shoes and walking barefoot in the cool sand. Near the dunes, the sand was warm and the wind was blocked, but as always the action was nearer the water. The surf was agitated and high. It was all I could do to keep my feet on solid ground. I think it was that darn sense of self-preservation that prevented me.
We were not the only ones who had the same design. South Beach, while not overrun as it is in the summer, still had a number of frolickers, most human but a few canine, drawn to a fleeting dream of summer.
One doesn’t often get the chance to ring in the new year in such spectacular fashion. Not more than once a year anyway.
We carved the date in the sand as a reminder of a very special day at a very special place.