Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Full Moon Paddle

With the approach of every full moon, there's talk of a full moon paddle. Usually, circumstances or the weather don't cooperate. Last night though, was glassy calm with a clear sky. I was tired after getting up early to see the lunar eclipse (see gallery blog) and a long day of work, and couldn't find anyone else who wanted to go. It seemed that this full moon might pass by unpaddled due to lack of motivation. Somehow, I pulled myself up from the easy chair and got down to the boat ramp.

In the still air, mosquitoes began landing and buzzing in my ears, which was good incentive to paddle along at a good clip. The moon had just come up as I passed Green, and at the sand bar on George's Head I turned on my lights. Gas lamps glowed from cabins on Potato and St. Helena, as well as on several sailboats at anchor that I passed near. Moonlight cast its glow over the sea, but mostly I navigated toward the vague outlines of islands I knew, listening for the telltale lap of wavelets against nearly invisible ledges. I disturbed a huge flock of ducks, their wings flapping against the water like applause.

After circling Wreck Island, I headed back to Stonington with the moon behind me, finally aiming toward the lights of the boat ramp. I'd been gone less than two hours. On Seabreeze Avenue, houses that will soon be vacant and dark for the next nine months were alive with families, driveways overflowing with out of state cars. Main Street felt quiet and subdued, restaurants all closed, a few cars strategically parked, emanating the glow of laptop computer screens.

I could hardly stay awake for dinner, but you have to have your priorities.

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