Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Be Back

Another strange attractor on a lazy summer afternoon.

We're at Eatons Neck on Long Island Sound for the nth time. This is one of the places that have a magnetic effect on our cruising plans. A glance at a cosmic chart plotter would show that our sailing tracks curve toward here when we pass near by, no matter what the plans, weather or press of schedule. This strange attractor arranges almost every cruise through these waters into converging lines, like iron filings that reveal the poles of a magnet. It is for us, a be-back place, one of many. 

On first visit I wasn't that impressed. It might have been the fog horn shrieking its motonous hoot, or the relatively narrow space to anchor outside the channel, or the prospect of being waked at 3AM when the Coast Guard scrambles on an emergency mission. These made it seem just another anchorage. Instead of a dinghy dock the shore is littered with signs prohibiting landing anywhere, period. Plus, the Coast Guard station's loud speakers entertain the yachties by announcing various activities between playing revelry and taps. What's to like about this?

However, we found ourselves here at least a dozen times during four seasons of exploring Long Island Sound. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways: no wake, no long trudge off the cruising path to get into the anchorage, good holding in sandy mud and a snug and well protected basin with a marked entrance. That, along with being close to Northport, a favorite port of call, and the comfort of having the Coast Guard really-really close should the need arise. All these make it easy to twitch the wheel to port on the way into Huntington Bay, ending up in Eatons Neck for the night or the weekend. It's a quirky, moody, and strangely attractive place.

She does and she doesn't . . .
Explaining why Eatons Neck is a favorite is like explaining a true love. You find yourself listing attributes. She has or does this and she doesn't have or do this. That list only nibbles at the core truth, you are simply attracted and form a connection. I think those lists of does or doesn't are how you describe this connection to yourself when really it is much more mysterious than that. If you want to know who, where or what you love, look in the rear view mirror to see where you've been, who was there with you, and what you were holding. Can't say better than that.

I hope Anita and I are able to visit Northport, Stuart, Havre de Grace, Jekyll Island, Lucaya, Pipe Creek, the Wacamaw River, and Waterford again before my final cruise is limited rocking on the porch and listing all the reasons.

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