Sunday, May 1, 2016

A Year in a Life

May 1, 2015 was the date on which Margaret and I closed on our little piece of Paradise by the Sea. Our search for our perfect place by the water was not always an easy one, a fact to which Diane Goodman can certainly attest.  Beginning in June, 2014, Diane must have shown us five dozen houses in towns all over Monmouth County and northern Ocean County.  We looked at homes in Bradley Beach, in Point Pleasant Beach, and in (I think) every town in between.  We were under contract on two other houses before we found the one that became our home.  

It is, without exception, the smartest money I have ever spent in my life.  I have spent the first half-century of my life in a relentless pursuit of peace, which for extended periods of time has eluded me. In this little piece of real estate located less than 3/10 of a mile from the Atlantic Ocean, I have found it.  

In "Reason to Believe", Springsteen sings of the elixir-like power of water.    He sings the truth.  There is, for me at least, something inherently yet inexplicably powerful about the ocean - even more so in the autumn and in the winter than in the summer.  Margaret and I have availed ourselves of every opportunity to get down the Shore throughout the "off-season", during which time I have spent countless hours running along the water.  I cannot explain it but it is an experience that leaves me invigorated - and not exhausted - irrespective of the distance covered. 

We fell in love with our little home before we spent our first night in it.  That being said, under Margaret's direction, substantial improvements have been made to it during Year One.  At the time we bought it, it was painted what was a truly horrific shade of green.  It no longer is.  The horrible green paint has been replaced by vinyl siding, the color of which "sea grass" seemed appropriate given our proximity to the water.  

Even Rosie has enjoyed the time that she has spent at the Shore over the course of this past year. Nevertheless there are certain aspects of life at the beach that she finds troubling... if you happen to see her strolling along Ocean Avenue this summer sporting her "Dog Lives Matter" t-shirt, she would appreciate your support for her cause.  Or a treat.  

Preferably, the latter. 


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