N. asked me a few weeks ago to plan a weekend getaway to wherever, and right away I knew we’d be going to Assateague Island National Seashore and Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. First, there’s the obvious drive to visit all the national seashores–I’ve only been to Gulf Islands and Point Reyes, and I was excited to add another to the list. More, though, there’s the part where I just love seashores, especially the barrier island kind where a spit of land makes that magical liminal space, woodland forest on one side, sandy beach on the other, salty marshes in between. They are landscapes that don’t hold, on purpose, and they remind us–or me, anyway–of how delicate our edges are. Saturday was a cloudy and rainy day, but that made it eerily quiet out there in a most lovely way. Our first walk was along the sand dunes where the ghostly remains of a road reminded us that there used to be a plan to build houses there. And then there was a Nor’easter that reminded everybody that you can want to develop on parts of land, but land makes its own arguments. This was just in the 1960s, but it feels like it’s a road from another century. I snapped this picture on another walk on the other side of the island. I loved this view because it’s both water and land, and there’s a whole ecosystem, a way of life down there that we’re just not a part of, even if we need it. We left the bikes at home this time, because for me, walking is the right speed to see this stuff–take it slow out there.