I do enjoy long walks on the beach.

 

An October snow blankets the beach on Sarichef Island. The sea is still open. For now.

I remember my family taking me to the beach when I was very young. I loved the feeling of the warm sand on my feet and the gentle, salt-scented breeze on my face. I especially loved the energy I felt from the crashing waves. Sometimes when we had to go home, when we had to leave the beach, I would cry. Now, my home is a two-minute walk from the beach. Even though we’re only 22 miles south of the Arctic Circle, in late summer the days were surprisingly warm. Temperature weren’t much different from those on beaches in Northern California or Oregon.

But that was two months ago. Soon, the sea will freeze. On our daily walks along the shore, we notice patches of ice on the sand, and the near-shore water where it is most shallow is slushy at times. Most of the shorebirds are gone now.