If I had to choose a physical location to associate with the word ‘home’, it’d be Surf City, NC. While the old place I lived had a mailing address of Hampstead, it was well north of that particular town, and outside the Surf City town limits by about half the width of a mouse’s whisker. So Surf City is the place I’d choose.
I spent a couple of weeks puppy sitting in Columbia, SC, and after that a few days with my son and his sweetie in Jacksonville, NC. Along the way between the two, I stopped in Hampstead proper to check on my storage unit containing the few things I kept that don’t ride around with me in Gypsy. After Florence, I went in with the mindset that I’d lost all of it to the fury of the hurricane, and anything I might salvage from the bin would be a plus. Turns out the waters never made it that high in that location, so everything in there was safe. I’m calling that a bonus.
After checking the storage unit, I checked on the old house, which seemed to be intact, and surpisingly didn’t seem to have flooded. All the monster pines in the front yard were where they should be, and only one little hardwood tree was down, as far as I could tell. I was relieved to see that. I love that place, and am stupidly attached to it. After that, I drove out to the beach in Surf City. The beaches were closed and the hurricane damage to the dunes was extensive. All the houses had blue tarps on the roof, all had piles of furniture and insulation and drywall and shingles and lumber in front of them, out by the road. Most of them were still standing, at least.
I really needed some quiet time on the beach, but my next best choice was a little park off the main drag on the sound side of the island. I took my birding camera set-up out on the boardwalk, but really I was there to just think in peace. I’ve always enjoyed that little park, and I miss it a lot.
Anyway, here’s some birds I shot there a few days later.