My stay at a friend’s Yarmouth Port house on Cape Cod was a quiet respite. I could imagine the locals, permit required, carrying their beach toys and chairs to Dennis Pond in warmer days. Not a time for swimming in October, I took a walk to the pond and beyond most mornings, drove out for lunch and an afternoon wander, and met my kids for dinner at night, in for one of their culinary creations or out for seafood. I heard wild turkeys gobbling in the yard one morning, rooting around in the fallen leaves.
I often look for something to read that reflects the area or culture that I’m visiting. (Reading on the road) In the crammed-to-the-rafters bookstore on the corner, I found a treasure, The Outermost House, written in 1928, a local classic. The author, Henry Beston, spent a year solo in a house perched on the dunes, just south of the Nauset Light (National Seashore). The little house was declared a National Literary Landmark in 1964; a winter storm destroyed it in 1978. Beston’s musings on how humans live with nature, and his lyrical descriptions of the subtle changes in sea and sand, wildlife and weather, sounds and smells, heightened my observations during beach wanderings.
Sunset at low tide along Chapin Beach was magical! We checked the tide calendar predictions to catch the right moment. The low tide on Cape Cod Bay pulls the water out farther than one can see. A group of riders trotted out to soak in the view.
As we turned from the beach once the sun had set, the full moon, the celestial tide shaper, lit the dunescape.
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