A herd of turtles

more than 30 turtles wait at the edge of a pond to be fed.
I’ve often heard the phrase, “We’re off like a herd of turtles.” The idea, I guess, is that we’re not going to be in a big hurry — another version of my mother’s special sarcasm, as in we’re about to be late for church and us kids are just coming downstairs to the car and Mom says, “ Can you kids move any slower.”

But I’d never actually seen a herd of turtles — until one day on Hatteras, one of the barrier islands protecting the coast of North Carolina.Read more

Hatteras: more than a line on a map

Black and white spiraling stripes mark Hatteras Light in the setting sun
For the weeks leading up to the trip, I would tell people I was going to Hatteras. When I got there, I wasn’t even near it.

The islands don’t look like much on a map, and in many places, they’re not — barely wider than the two-lane road known as Route 12.Read more

Promises to a small child

A child hold my hand and searches for the biggest wave
We stop at the entrance to the beach, a couple miles south of Salvo on Highway 12, where the sign says four-wheel drive recommended, lower tire pressure to 20 pounds or less. I pull the shift into 4WD-Lo and head out for the Jeep’s first time on a beach.Read more

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