The son-in-law and I, after supper on the night of the storm, got into the truck and headed down to the beach, to see what was happening. As we left, thanks to a tongue of dry air coming from the southeast, the stormclouds were breaking up, revealing a brilliant full moon, surrounded by racing clouds.
There were still two hours to go before high tide, so how bad could it be?
When we got there I discovered that there was no memory chip in my camera, and I did not, as usual, have a spare handy. Oops. Tom’s Embarrassing Moment number seventeen thousand forty two. (I’ve been embarrassed a lot in my life…) Maybe it’s time to keep a chip in the glove compartment of the truck? Luckily, J. had a little point and shoot Olympus, their basic “waterproof” model. The waterproof part turned out to be a very good thing.
Learning a new camera operating system at short notice was a challenge. The flash kept firing, which made for some strangely atmospheric photos. Extracting useable images from the files, once we got home, took a while.
The sound of the waves was astonishing, a deep bass roar that almost overpowered speech. The sound, the moon, plus the sight of the water, the winds and the waves, was way beyond ordinary. Once we got the flash turned off, we could see water all around the walkway, in what is usually a sedgy field.
Water, everywhere, on the ground and in the air. At the end of the walkway, we had to wade to get to the dunes.
Flash went off again. Below is the path up the dunes. In a few hours, the overwash from the storm will have cut the path five feet deeper than it is here.
From the top of the dunes, almost as far as you could see out to sea, the ocean was foam and waves.
A powerful scene. A scene of beauty.
These waves were between twelve and sixteen feet high. Just after this photo was taken, a bigger wave hit the foot of the dune, and knocked us arse over teakettle. Departure seemed prudent, and we left, grateful to have been only doused, and not swept away.
We tried to go to Quansoo, just east of us, but the water had risen so much that the road wasn’t passable. We took a short walk to the shore, farther inland, and found a place where we could look out over the Tisbury Great Pond to the barrier beach and the ocean beyond. There wasn’t much barrier beach to be seen. It was covered with waves and storm surge.
Over all, in the clear, warm tropical air, was the full moon.