Oct 02 2011

Point Street Memories

There are some people who say the good things in life never last; those people have never been to Edisto.

This thought struck me today when I decided to get out of the house and go down to the beach. Instead of hitting up the normal beach access closest to my house, I got in the car and drove – with the windows down – to Point Street. I pulled my car to the side of the road, parked, and headed for the water.

Instantly this feeling of déjà vu came over me and as I paid more attention to my surroundings I realized I drove right up to the house I used to stay in 25 years ago. Right next to the house, there’s soft white sand that cuts a swath through the sea oats, sand spurs, and scrub brush blossomed over with wild flowers. It’s this path that has always stayed in my mind because it is among the first paths I ever walked that took me straight to the beach.

As a child, that path seemed to go on forever. I remember holding onto my mom’s hand as my bare feet bounced as quickly as hot grease on a skillet over the sun-baked sand (nobody could ever keep shoes on me as a kid). I remember being distracted by the wildflowers that lined the path and wanting to pick them, but I never did seeing as they were always protected from little fingers by threatening sand spurs. Plus, nothing could ever fully distract me from the ultimate goal: getting into the surf.

It was enough back then to just go up to my thighs and splash around with my sister. I never went in too deep where my oldest siblings played – that was just too scary. I didn’t learn to love the scary part until I was older and then it was almost impossible to get me out of the breakers. Now, however, I seem to have reverted to my thought process that the “deep end” is scary because I only like to wade in the surf and look out over the beach and seemingly endless Atlantic.

When I stood in the water today, I kept looking back at the house and remembering showing the sharks’ teeth that I found to my grandparents, flying a kite with my uncle, being chased with bugs by my brother, getting beach balls stuck in the palm tree with my sister, making sand castles on the beach with my mom, and trusting my dad to take me in the deep end during low tide just as long as he never let me go.

Like many of the old cottages from back when Edisto was dotted with simple beach homes (a far cry from some of the almost palatial homes that have popped up over the years) the house has been updated, but it is still very much the same. The memories I have seem imprinted all around it so intensely that just looking at the house is like watching a home video of my past while still standing in my present.

Many things have changed here at the beach since those days 25 years ago, but nothing can ever change the true spirit of Edisto that lives inside all of us who call this place home.

 

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