Friday, December 09, 2011

Walking Wellfleet's Marina After Hours

Sven and I went down to the marina yesterday afternoon. It is fast becoming our favorite walk. There’s no dune to negotiate, no cold wind off the ocean to require scarf and long underwear. Something is always happening, be it shellfishermen out on the flats, collecting oysters, or a new configuration of boats, both in the water and out, or birdwatchers at low tide, binoculars in hand. (In this photo, a fellow Wellfleetian points out an egret to Sven.) Yesterday we noticed sailboats and catamarans propped up in the parking lot, as if ready for a competition on the number of barnacles, encrusted to hull and propeller.

A good time to walk is right before sunset, when the long rays of the sinking sun sparkle off windows on Sandpiper Hill. The harbormaster has gone home, and the place is usually deserted. You can watch a seagull as it drops a clam onto the hard surface of the pavement, intent on dinner. Sometimes shellfishermen are returning with baskets of oysters or clams, which they load into pick-ups, visibly tired after a long day’s work. There are Wellfleet landmarks to admire, like Pearl, Mac’s Seafood, and WHAT, all closed for the season. Often I imagine the crowds of summer and rejoice that they have departed. We 3000 residents again have this marvelous town to ourselves. The peace and quiet resounds at the marina after hours.

Sometimes we see other pedestrians, especially retired folks, like Sven. They, too, have realized the marina walk is a perfect spot for a bit of exercise. The walk measures one half a mile, so theoretically one needs to go around twice to make a dent in the daily exercise requirement. Usually, once is all we do though. We often end up on the pier, watching the sunset. Wellfleet has fabulous sunsets in the fall and winter.

Have you ever walked around Wellfleet’s marina?