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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Some reflections on Coastal Life

Last week was a tough week in Eastern North Carolina. Right on the Crystal Coast, we fared much better than some folks. Our patch of ground along the White Oak River came through the torrential rains in good shape.

Swansboro officially reported 21.35 inches of rain last Thursday. The government precipitation maps show us at 20 inches. My own simple weather station recorded 20.25 inches of rain in one 24 hour period.

In spite of that, our area escaped a lot of serious damage. Areas to the north and west of us are having a tough time. The last I heard the New River will not crest until this Thursday.

When weather deals an area a serious blow, and you happen to escape personally, about all you can do is be thankful for your luck. Man will never conquer Mother Nature so we just have to be prepared for what comes.

We have lived on mountains and in the wilderness. I have seen melting snow blow a 24 ft long 36" culvert out of the ground in Canada. I have watched as the normally peaceful Roanoke River has spilled over its banks and closed highways in Roanoke, Virginia. I once even drove in the wake of a tractor trailer along the banks of the mighty St. John River in New Brunswick, Canada.

While I am in awe of the power of water, I am also appreciative of the great beauty and peace that water can bring to us. Our neighborhood was having an end of summer party last Saturday night, and I noticed that we were heading for a beautiful sunset.

It took me less than ten minutes to walk back to my house and have my skiff headed out the Inlet so I could take some pictures. The whole ride probably did not last twenty minutes.

However, the beauty that I saw and photographed might last a lifetime or more. Time on the water can be really special. Perhaps those moments mean even more at a time when we have been reminded of the power of water.

The pictures that I took Saturday evening and the ones I snapped this morning remind me of just how important water is to my state of mind.

In a world which is often so busy that people have little time to appreciate its natural beauty, I am thankful that I live in a place where being on the water is so easy. With water at my backdoor, I feel like I have an escape valve which lets me maintain my sanity.

Sometimes, however, being on the water is just not enough. You have to completely lose yourself in the sounds and noise of the water. I can accomplish that with a beach walk which is easy to find about ten minutes from our home.

Whatever it is that is special about seeing water is something that I cherish. Maybe it is because I am a Pisces or perhaps my mother just spent too much time on the beach. Whatever it is, I cam going to continue to enjoy it as long as I can.

It looks like this week we will be a great one for enjoying the water on the Crystal Coast

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