Sunday, June 28, 2009

A New Friend

As you may know I am lucky enough to live in a beach side community. We've lived here for many years and enjoyed our private but rocky beach as a place to go searching for seaside treasures. The east coast shore has been hit by a series of strong storms over the last month and as a result we now have a sandy beach. This may not sound like much but after needing water shoes to swim and being unable to walk barefoot on the beach comfortably we are so thrilled. We've been down the beach three times this week. Soooo much fun for me. I could just sit by the ocean all day, not in an attempt to get sun and a tan but just to soak in the ocean. I love everything about the ocean: the sounds, sights, smells and feelings it evokes. I'm happy to be by the water in the warmth of the sun or in the mist or fog or even the in light rain.

Over the past two years on occasion we have met up with an older gentleman during our beach excursions. I would say he is in his late 60's or early 70's. He reminds me of someone from my childhood-a grandfather figure. He always says hello as do we when we see him. This past week was the first time we have encountered him this year. 'n' and I actually look forward to seeing our beach friend. Today we planned a long morning/early afternoon excursion to the beach. It is cool and misty, the perfect beach combing weather, for me anyway. So off we went in our jeans and sweatshirts, ponytails and baseball caps with a plastic bucket for large treasures and plastic bag for small treasures. The beach is within walking distance but due to the threat of rain we decided to drive. During the brief car trip 'n' expressed her hopes that we might see our little old beach friend. Alas when we walked down the ramp we were alone on our now sandy stretch of beach. I must say we were both a bit disappointed but we were happy to be together on the beach. We walked in the opposite direction from where N usually leads us and quickly found several large chunks of frosty, beautiful sea glass. In case you are unaware; sea glass is a bit of an obsession with me and I am constantly on the look out while we walk the beach. It was clear from the debris on the beach that the tide had been another extreme high tide early that morning. As we continued our walk we came upon a huge lobster trap covered in sea weed. Upon further investigation we discovered what looked like a live lobster in the trap. How exciting. Looking back up the beach we noticed our friend had come down to the shore to check on his small boat. Long story short we walked back to tell him about the trap. He was pleasant as always; commenting on how 'n' and I are the only fisher women around. We walked with him down to the trap. Finally we introduced ourselves and found out that our friend 'J' was originally from Ireland. Galway to be precise. He hails from the same town from which my maternal grandfather emigrated. I also found out that his sister and I share the same name. He knew of my grandfather's surname. Funny how there could be so much in common with a stranger. Turned out the pot was too big for our friend to use, but he was able to open it up and inspect the lobster. It was still alive. He insisted we bring the lobster home and boil him up. He even gave me cooking instructions. While we were sad to leave the beach early we were happy to have spent time with our new friend, find some beautiful sea glass and then bring home the catch of the day. 'n' and I will be looking forward to seeing 'J' the next time we visit the beach.



C said...

We live by the beach too and I treasure the beach excursions we are lucky enough to have. How amazing is it to be able to go for walks by the water and feel the sand in your toes...whenever you want!?!

I loved reading about your new friend :) What a wonderful post :)

Ann said...

I LOVE sea glass (even though most of mine is garnered from Lake Erie near Buffalo, NY). I have a small collection of it. How lovely -- to find a friend and to find a lobster! Now that's lucky, indeed!

Oh, and thanks for your lovely comment about my mom. I'm sure you could tell it was a labor of love.

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