We live on the eastern seaboard of the Atlantic Ocean now and close enough that we can reach our ocean shores in a short drive. The North Carolina coastline, I read somewhere once, is actually longer than the Californian coast if measured in miles in and out all the many inlets and bays. An extremely varied and fascinating coastline with stories and fables unique to the people of this state and intricately tied up with the very first settlers to ever arrive from across the sea.
Most unique to this area are a string of border islands, mere banks of sands covered in wild sea oats, which provide a protective barrier to the mainland. This creates large bodies of water between mainland and island, called sounds. They thrive with life both above and below the water and in turn provide much recreation and sustenance to those fortunate to live and play here.
Iconic lighthouses have provided safety and direction to ships both large and small for decades and are often on the list of vacationers to this region. Each one built or decorated in a very different and instantly recognizable pattern. Huge black and white diamonds decorate the Cape Lookout Lighthouse, while black and white twirls mark the Cape Hatteras lighthouse, for all the world like some monochrome candy cane, as unique!
Sometimes my purpose when I travel down to this sea is to explore another lighthouse but often it is just to spend unhurried time there. On the beach, by the sea, listening to the call of the gulls and hearing the ceaseless rhythm of the waves. As I said, it soothes my soul and reminds me that there is something far bigger and more eternal than me. It puts “me” into perspective again.