Ocracoke is a wonderful place to come home to. I enjoy traveling to other places (though mostly my destination has been Indiana lately), and, of course, I have enjoyed spending time with Lou Ann. But I never dread coming back to the island. Merle was in the post office this morning (the P.O. is often the gathering place for island information). She commented that some off-island friends had asked if she didn't feel "isolated" with Highway 12 virtually closed. Her answer: "Yes, and it feels wonderful!"
Yesterday, coming out of the Variety Store, David Tolson (a former student of mine) pulled me over to the side. He had a joke to tell me. He'd heard it from Grant, the UPS guy. We laughed and chatted, and laughed some more. Sitting there on the bench on the porch (sharing stories and humor) reminded me once again why I like living here so much. (By the way, I can't repeat the joke here, but I can tell it at poker on Friday night.) Last week Lou Ann commented on the special closeness and sense of community and shared history she always feels when on the island. I suppose it really is different here, in many ways.
In other news, as they say, yesterday's post garnered two comments.
The first: "Island eccentrics, eh? You'll have to share with the rest of us." Well, it's a tad impolitic to share too much in a public forum when you live in such a small village. I suggest you just hang out around the locals to get to know some of these folks yourselves. From this reader's comment, he or she is well on the way to having plenty of colorful stories.
The second: "How is the bridge replacement project going?" I have no official word, but rumor has it that all is proceeding more quickly than expected. One unofficial source mentioned the end of this month, another claimed the middle of this month, as the time when the road might be reopened. I'm told they are working on the last two bridges (over Old Hammock Creek, and Island Creek, near the campground). I understand that final paving will have to wait (for warmer weather, I presume), but that the road will be reopened as soon as possible. In the meanwhile there appear to be very few glitches. Mail, UPS, groceries, gasoline, lumber, and other deliveries keep coming.
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is inspired by an April, 1942 article about the island in The State magazine. You can read it here.