Morning After the Storm

Emerging from the cool mist: A bird, a kayaker, and a boardwalk stroller.

A little corner of corn, along with a mulberry tree full of red winged blackbirds.

A pair of presidential helicopters flying over the beach…

… signaled, this morning, the imminent appearance of the Bidens, who have a place down the block.

Beautifully distressed, beautifully planted…

… green containers in front of a Rehoboth Beach house.

We’d walked past the boardwalk lamps…

… and now, at one in the morning, it was just beach, stars, and dark sky. The waves pounded rather scarily. On the blue tarp path to the sand, a solitary person startled us. “I was lying down on the path for the meteor shower, but I got up when I heard you.” A slender young man, maybe seventeen, wearing a hockey uniform, appeared in our flashlight. “My mom told me there might be a meteor shower.”

“Might even be a meteor storm,” said UD. “But might be nothing.”

“I’ve seen twelve meteors already,” he said, excited. Also genial, polite.

“That’s promising! Any of them have tails with fireballs?”

“No, but most of them were very bright.”

UD liked his excitement, recognized it as the same species as hers — the anticipation of an insane cosmic shakeup. As in – why should that not be? Why should the infinitely firm (yeah I know it’s not really; but that’s how it looks to us) firmament not do a big ol’ break dance and splatter itself with sweat? Why shouldn’t that occasionally be? Not Stars Fall From Heaven stuff, but the universe for, say, twenty minutes, losing its glacial poise – its gassy poise. Letting its freak flag fly…

And here were Les UDs, ideally situated – prone under a huge clear sky on an empty stretch of soft sand. Light breeze, seventy degrees.


And certes, as soon as we lay down, bright meteors (and jets, and satellites; and, over there, bejeweled container ships) blasted out of the black, their silver stilettos thrilling the three of us… But there weren’t many of them — not a shower, not a storm, not even a swarm; merely jabs here and there concerning the death of comets.

And fine. Our humble humanoid charge was to thank the divine withholder for at least this much glint, even this weakly dropped hint of the amazement up there.

Mr UD babbled throughout about big bang controversies and changes in the laws of physics and UD tried to follow as her eyes swept the sky.

After, UD told the hockey kid about Cherry Springs State Park. He whipped out his phone and read, entranced. We left him there (Mr UD made sure also to mention Big Meadows) in the bowl of the universe, in his little circle of cellphone light.

2 Beach Pics
Dude catches a fish just as Mr UD stops to chat with him. Mr UD says he brings him luck. Dude agrees. Dude’s waving the fish at UD, who asked him to wave the fish at her.
Diapered, bootied, and pompadoured ducks on the boardwalk.
With all the storms kicking up the tides…
… stone collectors pace the shore all day, looking for beauties. Here’s one UD found. She calls it Australia, because its brown imprint seems more or less the shape of that country. Its delicate lines even mark latitude and longitude. Or are they a map of flight paths?
Sisyphean Sweeper in the Soup

Day Two of our mutual observation of the Sisyphean Sand Sweeper, who emerges cinematically from the sea mist.

There he is, far right on the boardwalk, having brushed his bit of silt beachward… He grasps his broom in his right hand as he boards his bicycle … “Does he just do this one opening,” asks Mr UD as we watch him wobble off, “or does he do a line of them?”

He disappears into the haze.

And ol’ UD instantly thought of Don DeLillo’s story, “Midnight in Dostoevsky,” which, as the title suggests, evokes a darker than dark, zero-visibility world, and places in it an intriguing person who emerges from the cloud of unknowing; it then adds two observers who, day after day, discuss among themselves this human apparition. In the story, it’s a rather shabby old man in a snowy empty upstate NY town who every day takes a solitary walk in the snow; here, in our fashionable Delaware beach town, it’s a thready old guy who appears every morning to accomplish obscure self-appointed rounds.

UD’s homemade beach stones…

… Ready for the oven.

Sisyphean Sand Sweeper

He arrives in the early morning on his bicycle, on which he’s balancing a broom. Leaning his bike against a bench, he takes the broom and, at the start of each windy walkway onto the beach, begins to sweep the sand off of the boardwalk.

Off we go…

… for another couple

of weeks. Mr UD has

finished his semester,

the dog is off to the

kennel, and we are set

to leave.

Blogging continues,

as always, at the seaside.

Leaving Rehoboth Beach…

… is always a drag. We will be back, for two weeks, in May/June.

Whale Watching, Rehoboth

Much excitement this morning as a huge whale circled in front of the beach, accompanied by dolphins and spouting like mad. Faithful readers know UD a few years ago practically walked into a seal relaxing on this shore. That was more than enough excitement; but now there’s her first whale-sighting. Gevalt.


So Early in the Spring

Where I’m Calling From

Sunrise Rehoboth

Psychedelic ocean and the gulls slate gray

A man prepares his tripod for blastoff


Backstage the moon shot through with blue

Bows to the sun and gives way


Where’s the pilgrim fellowship chanting in the sand?

The mournful Scottish bagpipe band?


This morning all worship comes down to me

Godless, with sacred symphony


“I love you, beach! I love the way you look! I love the way you sound! I love the way you smell!”

A young woman, walking on the boardwalk with a friend, suddenly shouted this yesterday. Mr UD was walking behind her, and reported the event back to UD.

We didn’t know the president would also be here, but, sitting on our balcony yesterday, we saw the tell-tale coast guard boats.

As for last evening, we looked up from our cell phones a little after eight to see an enormous clear golden moon casting a long silver line on the water. Later, as it whitened, the moon was bright, like the sun.

This morning was all pastels over the water, and UD walked the few steps to the new Cafe Reho, where she got breakfast to bring home to Mr UD. She also checked out CoWork Reho next door, where you can rent your own office with enormous ocean views.

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