You know those days when it is just plain awful to travel the 20 yards from the awkward exit of the Stop & Shop to your car in the lot? The days when it is raining and blowing so hard that you feel a primordial fear for your safety? Yes? Imagine then that you work on the Chappy ferry, and your work ethic mandates that you not only hang out in this weather, but you do your hanging out aboard a barge on the very irritated sea. Or you have the pleasure of pitch-forking seaweed from the waters at the mouth of the slip onto “dry” land. Yay! So, with that image in mind, I give hearty thanks to Peter et al for their efforts not just this day, but every day they ply the seas, no matter the weather.

Living atop the North Neck bluffs has its many perks, but being a front-and-center audience for a nor’easter isn’t always one of them. I’ve never lived beneath the El in Chicago, but I imagine it is a similar experience. However, our simple 800-square-foot home handles the chaos with considerable aplomb. Both she and the Big Camp next door seem to relish the weather, whistling a happy tune like a golden retriever lolling its tongue in the breeze of the Pike from the window of a speeding VW.

There is something to be said for the simplicity of architecture that allows buildings to stand resolute for a century with little alteration to their being from the elements. And our cat Alphonso seems to have channeled this stoic nature — he slept through 90 per cent of the storm, waking only to eat and bite my foot. If he had taken Toto’s place in the Wizard of Oz, chances are that he’d still be sleeping on the bed in the displaced Kansas home.

For those of you who missed it, the Outer Harbor hosted the last potluck dinner of the season on the North Neck beach. It was very well attended by the seagull community. And though fare was limited to a singular dish of washed-ashore scallops, all present agreed that it was a most delicious affair.

Halloween came and went on Chappy with nary a scare. I think the weather discouraged much of the headless horseman carousing — even the undead have limits to what they’ll subject themselves to. Maddie and Liz did get into the spirit however, dressing up for their ferry shift. Maddie, the best I could tell, was either Gandalf or any number of residents of hermit cabins in the Adirondacks. Liz went all out with a pair of silk wings (circa 1953) loosely strapped to her back — best guess is she was either the Chappy “ferry,” or one worn-out angel. Maybe a combination of the two. Good news was that the disturbingly naked ebony mannequin that represented the ferry’s entry into the Edgartown scarecrow competition was forced into clothes by the weather. I swear I saw it move, however whilst waiting in line.

In other news, I found a single pine needle in bed with me the other night. Arlene is not in favor of me bringing the outside inside, least of all in our bed, so I disrobe regularly before crossing more than a foot of our threshold (down ladies!), and I tend to bathe before sleeping . . . so I believe that the needle most likely teleported itself from the third pitch pine on the left, as one enters the golf course, to beneath the covers of our cozy 2,000 count sheets. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it. There’s a lot more unlikely things on Chappy than teleporting pine needles — just ask the deer wearing the argyle sweater.

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