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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Being Thankful on the Coast

Thanksgiving seems to be one of the favorite holidays of everyone that I know. It is a magic time which somehow has been able to survive with minimal commercialization. Most people take Thanksgiving as a holiday to get together with family and friends and enjoy a good meal together. While plenty of food is involved, even more effort is expended on being together. People drive hundreds of miles to be with loved ones. First and foremost, if we are lucky, we can rejoice in everyone being healthy enough to make the celebration. While family dominates Thanksgiving day, there are plenty of things for which we can say thanks here along the coast.
When I go down my list of what to be thankful for beyond my family, often the first thing I come up with is the privilege of living in such a scenic area. I always take a short detour to my dock each morning as I head out to get the newspaper. The view of the water always amazes me. Sometimes I will get fussed at by one of the big Blue Herons. Other mornings, there are White Herons flying overhead, and in January, I can be surprised by Pelicans in the neighborhood.

Similarly when I have had a tough day, I always find an excuse to drive across the bridge to Emerald Isle. Riding across Bogue Sound around sunset can cure almost any case of disappointment. The colors on the sound are truly something special. The view from the bridge brings great beauty into the life of all who are fortunate enough to see it.

Next on my list of things to be thankful for is Carteret County. First and foremost, it is a safe place to live and raise a family. We have little crime and plenty of great people who make it a friendly area. We have a moderate climate, wonderful seashores, Croatan National Forest, and even low taxes with great schools and almost no traffic. It is a hard to beat combination.

Similarly I am thankful for the wonderful waters that are a part of Carteret County. I cannot think of an area where you can have more fun boating, fishing, and just relaxing on the water. We have waters which are safe for swimming and for our marine creatures.

Also I would add to my list the many people here in Carteret County whose jobs and lives touch my life. The list includes my business associates, the members of our church, the people who live in our subdivision, and the many hardworking people who provide the services which make our lives so pleasant here on the Crystal Coast. That includes everyone from the fishermen who catch our shrimp to the many waiters and waitresses who somehow always have a smile on their face even during tourist season.

While many places close up during the winter, that is not the case here in Carteret County. The Crystal Coast just becomes an even closer community. By mid winter, most locals are easy to spot in restaurants. I am thankful that we are small enough to be a friendly community but still large enough to have all the basic services and shopping that we need.

As other areas of the country get covered by snow, I am very appreciative of our weather which allows snow only as a very rare occurrence. The lack of ice and snow is one of the prime reasons that my wife and I are living here in Carteret County.

The Crystal Coast is a great place with much for which to be thankful, and of course it is even better if you can surround yourself with all your friends and family who can help you enjoy all the bounty of our area.

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