The road couldn’t have been more than a quarter of a mile long at best. Actually it was called a drive and not a road. Along the length of this drive there were only 2 houses that I can recall… and I never remember seeing a person or even a vehicle at either one of them. Other than the two houses there was nothing at all… just scrubby looking bushes that came right up to the edge of the asphalt in some places.
At the end of the drive was a large turn around area and some “off the pavement” parking. It was as though someone had put this in for development that didn’t show up. Also at the end was a path.. it some ways it almost seemed magical. This path cut through the dune line and opened onto the Atlantic Ocean.
The name of this drive is Plover Drive. It seemed to be between Southern Shores and Duck. This was the perfect beach. There were currents that seemed to run parallel to the shore line creating a significant drop off just a few steps out into the water. But beyond this drop off this waters would shallow again making it the perfect set up for waves. And that is why we came.
I can’t count the number of nights I watched the channel 13 news waiting on Joe Foulkes to give the weather forecast for the outer banks so I would know what direction the wind was blowing. Because when it was right, the next morning, by sunrise we would be on our way down.
To this day I have never seen anything more beautifully incredible than a sunrise on the outer banks of North Carolina. You “bucket listers” out there need to add that one if you haven’t seen it already. But anyway… we would try to be out on the beach as early as we could… we wouldn’t go in the water but would just sit and wait.. once the sun was up and the tide was in the right direction out we would go.
We would literally stay out in the water for hours at a time. We would be completely spent by the time we came back in. So we would crash on the beach and take a nap… and possibly head back out for some more fun before the end of the day.
As the sun would begin to make it’s way down on the sound side and the shadows of the dune line would start to over take the beach, we would head out for home… and suddenly I would realize… I hadn’t seen another person the entire day! We had the beach to ourselves for the whole day. And that happened over and over again.
I was down there again recently… and it has changed. So very much… but I did walk over the dune line back out on to that beach…. and felt the sand under my feet and tasted the salt on my lips again…. and for a split moment… I had it all to myself again… and all was right with the universe.