Wednesday, August 28, 2013

block island & just go

Last weekend Mike and I took a quick 3-day trip to Block Island, a sleepy, laid-back island about 13 miles off the coast of Rhode Island. We stayed on Mike's family sailboat, docked in Great Salt Pond.

Maybe due to its small size or because of its distance from the mainland, Block Island seemed much more easy-going and naturally pristine than some of the other summer destinations I've been to in New England. It was so beautiful! Everywhere you looked were coastal wildflowers, elegantly weathered colonial homes and fishing boats in marshy coves. There were signs for clam bakes, live lobsters sold right off the boat and music streaming from open-air bars. Adirondack chairs facing the smooth blue sea  and swaying dune grass were all over the place, free for the sitting.

(As far as the atmosphere, Block Island reminded me slightly of where I worked in St. Simon's Island, Georgia: a mix of wealthy-looking tourists, harried-looking families, young summer workers itching to get off the clock, and salty boaters who found the island by various means years ago and just ended up staying and becoming permanent fixtures in the local bars and docks. Key West felt the same way. It's interesting to consider the atmosphere of a summer tourist destination now that I've been on both sides of the bar.)

Unfortunately, I slipped in the boat and hurt my back badly Sunday night, so we couldn't rent bikes or scooters or explore the island as much as we planned. It was still fun to relax, chat up some bartenders, listen to the wind howl and watch the weather go from a foggy drizzle to a soaking rainstorm on Monday. Everywhere we went I snapped photos to inspire new artwork.

While we planned to sail the boat back to Jamestown on Tuesday, my injury and the spooky-looking weather made us (me) decide the ferry was a better choice than a 5-7 hour sail home. Almost immediately after decided not to sail back and missed the deadline to make it into harbor before dark, the weather cleared, the sun shone brightly and big waves were nowhere to be found. I was embarrassed to have been so unadventurous when every experience I've ever had has encouraged the idea that you should always just go. I've been in 8 foot waves before; why was I worried about 3 foot ones? If Mike wasn't nervous, why was I? Have you ever had something this happen? It's not a big deal to have missed this sail - there will be many, many others - but my overcautiousness was frustrating and unlike me.

In hindsight, we should have sailed back... but I guess that's what hindsight is for.

Next time :)


  1. There have been so many times when I pushed my concerns aside to do something that didn't feel right and I always regret even though the sun came up...the path you took was probably the best. I always feel like things happen for a reason. I'm glad you got home safely.

  2. I am the same way.. Except I back out of things all the time.. I always regret it after.
    I am working on being more game for adventures especially as we are going to Europe as a family in two months
    Thanks for these pretty shots

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