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Saturday, September 19, 2009

Summer Is Back and In Fine Form

A week ago people were ready to bury summer. Fortunately this is the North Carolina coast. Here on the Crystal Coast our south facing beaches will not slide into fall and winter without a battle. 
Today the forces of warmth, blue skies, and emerald waters stormed back into town. I was happy to see the invasion, especially the blue skies. We really have not been cold, we just have not been hot. With the absence of hot, people assume that winter is around the next corner. 
It did my soul good to see people swimming in the ocean today. I was also pleased to hear my wife say that she needed cooler clothes for a beach walk. 
These are all signs of a summer that is fighting to stay in place as some places to the north of us are facing frost for the first time this weekend. If we see frost by December that will be soon enough for me.
If you listened to the weathermen last night, today's blue skies and warm temperatures were something of a surprise. The forecasts did not have us clearing up today.

When I rolled out of bed this morning, I thought that we were in store for even worse weather. Fog had blotted out the sun and blue skies were only a memory.

Fortunately it did not take long for us to get some better looking skies. The improved local weather quickly changed my plans for the day. First we headed off for a boat ride to Swansboro.

After that we took a quick trip to the beach to enjoy some ocean breezes. We were surprised by the large number of people on the beach at the Eastern Regional Access in Emerald Isle. There were a number of people fishing. There were also several people swimming with some of them a good distance off the beach.

It was actually pretty warm on the beach so there were a lot of umbrellas spread up and down the beach. This is such a great time of year. We have warm days and at night, we can sleep with the windows open. It is so nice to not have to run the air conditioning.

I also do not mind that the grass no longer needs to be mowed every week. There are some other signs of fall. Today when we stopped at Winberry's Produce Stand, they were selling their large bags of sweet potatoes. That is a definite signal that the growing season is drawing to a close.

There was a special treat waiting for me at the produce stand, scuppernongs. I have been eating those grapes since I was a kid growing up near Winston-Salem, NC, in the fifties. Considering that they are recognized as one of North Carolina's native grapes, they are a little challenging to find in the stores. However,they are well worth the effort.

It has been a good week here on the coast. I even managed to sneak in some kayaking during our impressive high tides.

With the sweet potatoes ripe, the skies blue, and the weather warm, all we need now is for the fish to start biting.

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