This weekend marks six months I’ve been living on Hatteras Island. If you’re new to my blog, I lived in Atlanta for 14 years, homesick for my hometown the entire time. Because of some factors related to the pandemic, my and my husband’s jobs allowed us to work remotely and live anywhere we want. The first chance I got, I moved home!
When we moved here in September, I would drive down Highway 12, the two lane that barely counts as a highway, and be overwhelmed with a feeling of happiness that I live here now. Six months later, I feel the same way. As I’m writing this, I’m sitting on the deck on the top floor of my house looking at the ocean in one direction and the sound in the other. I’m watching birds rest on the powerlines, and I can hear the surf pounding the beach. The wind has finally died down after a couple days of blowy weather, and the surface of the sound is like a piece of blue glass.
I still have to work, I still have to raise my children, and I still have to clean my house and feed the dogs and take care of the yard, but I am so much happier here than I ever was in Atlanta. There wasn’t anything wrong with my life in Atlanta. I just never felt at home there. It just wasn’t for me.
Life is simpler here. On my days off, I go outside. There aren’t any stores to shop at even if I wanted to shop. There’s very little to do here other than go outside. I’m a stone’s throw away from the beach, and I walk on the beach almost every day. This winter when it was blowing a gale and icy cold, I bundled up and hit the beach, even if only for a few minutes. Something about the sound of the waves and the whistling wind and the spray of the ocean restores my soul.
It’s almost Easter, and around Easter the tourists start to come back. Soon the beach will be full of people fishing and swimming and lying in the sun. The road I live on is full of vacation homes, and every week new families will move in and move out. I’ll see license plates from Virginia, Maryland, Ohio, New York, even Quebec.
This will be my kids first summer at the beach. In Atlanta in the summer, it’s so hot that you can hardly be outside unless you’re in a pool. My kids weren’t too keen on going outside, unless we are going to our friends’ pool. Here, I imagine we will be at the beach every day, or on the soundside in a kayak or a paddleboard. My kids will have tan skin and bleached out hair from hours in the sun. Salt will dry on their skin and, knowing my son, he will probably try to argue his way out of taking a bath because he’s already been in the water all day. I grew up here, and I know what it’s like to be a kid at the beach in the summer. It’s a good life. I wouldn’t trade it.