Thursday, January 12, 2006

Black Feathers & Coal

Walking along the surf is always a pleasant way to spend an hour or an afternoon. Yesterday I noticed a prodigious number of black feathers along one stretch of beach. At first I wondered what catastrophe had contributed to this flotsam. And then I remembered the great number of cormorants that regularly float offshore this time of year. I guess if each bird lost only one feather that would account for the thousands washed up at the high tide line.

Farther along I came across a footbal size chunk of black coal. I suppose it washed ashore from some steamer that met its fate on our beach many years ago.

I also found a small but nearly perfect scotch bonnet. It's always a treat to spy one of our offical state shells.

Maybe I'll find another treasure this afternoon. But really, just walking along the surf with the sun on my face and salt in the air is treasure enough.

Our current monthly Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of Ocracoke's Street Names, Part II, published December 19, 2005. You can read it here:


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