Hugs for my sister Nancy Lee on her September 15th birthday…
WORDPRESS DAILY PROMPT 8/24/2013:
THESE SANDALS WERE MADE FOR WALKING…WHERE?
ON NEW ENGLAND BEACHES BETWEEN
LAMOINE BEACH, MAINE
WALLIS SANDS BEACH IN RYE, NEW HAMPSHIRE
The wordpress daily prompt for August 24, 2013, is These boots are made for walking…
As soon as winter releases its cold to a warm spring, and sandals become comfortable footwear, I dig a ragged but solid pair of sandals from the back of my closet, where they were relegated while Old Man Winter blew his chilly bitter-cold breath over our community.
These sandals bear fond memories.
NOTE: These sandals are making more fond memories this September 2013—yesterday (September 14) they walked Nantasket and Duxbury beaches in Massachusetts. They plan on trekking many more beaches before we leave New England. The sandal photos in this post were taken September 6 at Misquamicut Beach in Rhode Island on the third day of our New England travels.
In 2003 my husband and I traveled together for 85 days in a “tin can.” That was how we referred to our vehicle of the day, which took us from our retirement home in Laurel Mountain Borough to the coastline of New England.
I’d decided I wanted to walk as many mainland beaches as possible between East Lamoine, Maine and Portsmouth, New Hampshire. I excluded the beaches on Maine’s islands to decrease complications—the KISS rule.
I chose East Lamoine, Maine, because seven generations ago a French Revolution émigré wed a third-generation Downeast Maine English-Irish pioneer. These were my ancestors, and two of the characters in my historical romance novel-under-construction.
Ending my walk at Wallis Sands Beach (actually in Rye, New Hampshire) was a no-brainer. I spent 11 years of my childhood in Portsmouth (29 Spring Street and 108 Spring Street), and many summer hours at Wallis Sands Beach.
I was joined at Lamoine Beach by some new-found relatives I had just met. Xxx des Isles and I are probably fourth cousins. He, his wife Doris, one of their sons and two of their granddaughters took the initial steps of my walk with me.
I walked every beach along the way that we could find. Some were very short—so short it seemed silly to walk them, but walk them I did. Other beaches were long, and Monte would drop me off and drive to the other end to wait for my appearance.
It was an interesting way to visit the beaches. I discovered I truly favored Popham Beach in Phippsburg, Maine, over the others. At the fort end the beach was shaped like a teacup, so if you stepped in the water it was quickly over your head. In the middle, at low tide, one could wade out 50 feet and not be knee deep. Also, a large rock outcrop could be reached and explored during low tide—but if we didn’t make it out before high tide, we would be stuck until low tide came again.
A second beach was also appealing, but for different reasons: it was named after my ancestors, the Rogers family. Old Orchard Beach has an amusement park at one end, but, unlike most people, I only briefly explored it before taking off to walk the beaches’ sand.
In the middle of Old Orchard Beach is a rock outcropping known as Googin’s Rocks. Again, something named after my ancestor, Patrick Googins.
We found ourselves in a cloud of fog at Short Sands Beach in York, Maine. The fog was so thick we could barely see the huge waves coming towards us. When a surfer arrived and entered the water with his surfboard I thought he was pretty careless not having a partner. If anything happened to him no one would know.
The walk ended at Wallis Sands Beach, where I once built sand castles that were washed away in high tide, where I buried my sister in the sand (or she buried me), where we sought tiny crabs in tidal pools, and where we climbed the massive rocks with skill.
Then we went to the newspaper office where I asked to speak to an editor. I shared with her that I celebrated my 60th birthday by walking all the beaches, and that I spent the better part of my childhood in the town. Sure enough, they printed a feature story on my adventures.
But I digress. This post is about these sandals that were made for walking…and that’s just what they did. They protected my feet as I walked on all the beaches. They could be worn in the water and out of the water. I never had to change my shoes with my change in activities, and my feet were never injured by stepping on rocks, broken shells, or sharp seaweed.
The sandals made it through two more visits to New England. I hope they make it through one more visit. They are my favorites because they are durable, comfortable, and hold many memories.