Luck of birth sometimes works in your favor. My family has been around North Carolina for a long time. Fortunately I was also born here between the mountains and the sea.
Life in North Carolina when I was growing up in the fifties and sixties was pretty good. I lived within walking distance of our elementary school. We were lucky in those days, I cannot remember anyone being excluded from our group which got together to play after school.
When we were not playing football or baseball, we spent a lot of time wandering the fields and woods. Travel when it happened was limited to short trips to visit our relatives who all lived with twenty miles of our home.
The one exception was summer vacation. I live for those two glorious weeks during the summer when my mom closed down her beauty shop and headed off to the beach or the mountains. I never kept track of which direction we went the most, but the beaches of North Carolina won my heart before I even started school.
There were no huge homes along the shore. We would rent a small cottage two or three blocks from the ocean. I do not remember air conditioning being one of the amenities until the early sixties. I doubt we cared. There were no air conditioners in our homes during the fifties.
The sand, water, and blue skies owned us and no one complained about the heat or the fact that we ate a lot of tomato sandwiches to keep down the cost of our trip.
One of our favorite places to go was Nags Head which happens to the beach picture that I have chosen for this post. I can remember many other beaches but Nags Head has always stuck with me. There is something special about it. While Nags Head has gotten fancier over the years, you can still have a relatively inexpensive night on the oceanfront in Nags Head.
I am happy that Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head got built before our politicians decided that all government spending is bad. The pier is a great place to soak up the beach and that wonderful ocean air that you find on the Carolina coast. There is nothing wrong with Jennette’s Pier being a day trip for us.
After our recent trip to Nags Head, I was talking to a friend and mentioned that we had just gotten back from a few days trip to the beach. He responded, “What are you doing going to the beach, you live at the beach?”
While it is true that we live less than ten minutes from the beautiful sands of the beaches of Emerald Isle, that does not mean that I am limited to just enjoying those beaches. Sometimes you have to spread your wings and fly a little.
Our recent trip “Down East” and to Cedar Island where we caught the ferry to Ocracoke Island brought back a lot of memories. On Ocracoke we stayed in the same motel which I checked into for a night in 1969 so that I could see that first black and white step on the moon.
Sometimes it is good to reconnect the dots. After all there is no denying I love the beaches of Emerald Isle. I would not have taken the time to write A Week at the Beach – The 2013 Emerald Isle Travel Guide without lots of love for this area.
Still there will be no complaints from me that the drive to Nags Head is less than three and one half hours. With those beaches being that close, maybe it is time to write a little guide about some of North Carolina’s other great beaches. I am thinking maybe my next guide will be called, “A Back Door to Ocracoke Island And The Beaches Up To Nags Head.”
If nothing else, the research is going to be a lot of fun.