It’s always been this way. The ocean has always been magical for me. First Hammonasset State Park on the Connecticut shore, then Revere beach north of Boston as a young professional in my 20s, and the one time we visited St. John’s in the Virgin Islands when the kids were little. It looked like Mt. Desert Island but without harsh winters. It felt like home.
Today I turned 66. The ocean still enthralls me. Sitting in our getaway cottage, “The Shag’s Nest,” outside of Yachats, Oregon, overlooking the massive Pacific, the sea shimmers. Waves roll in sporadically. As always. Maybe that’s why I love the sea; it changes yet it’s so dependable.
From childhood through 25 years of living in Southwest Harbor, Maine, the Atlantic sometimes roils up or freezes over in the coldest winters. But its behavior isn’t in anger or jealousy or because of any nasty habits. As Omar, my favorite character in “The Wire,” always said, “It’s how I do.” That’s what the ocean does.
Every year, if I’m anywhere near either coast, I have crabmeat for my birthday dinner. It’s how I do.