Why Am I The Only One Here? Wintertime at the Beach

New England beaches become lonely during the nine months of the year that people forget about them, I think. On the few isolated summer days when the weather is actually warm and the sun surprisingly visible, people desperate for what wintertime left behind travel from near and far, jamming highways and bottlenecking back roads, in search of waves and sand. Most people seem to compartmentalize the beach into only their summertime lives. Really, though, the same sea where you can splash and bake in the summer still awaits the other three seasons of the year, holding an entirely different atmosphere and appeal.

I grew up in the landlocked Midwest, with the nearest ocean at least a thousand miles away. Now that I live just minutes from the beach, I’m not about to waste it. Usually I travel alone to the Long Island Sound, a large sliver sandwiched between Connecticut and Long Island, New York, whose waters are typically brown and sometimes black. But those of us who patronize its shorelines are accustomed to these colors. It’s okay. The beach is still the beach.
solo female traveler -seagull on snowy jetty

In the off season sometimes I’m entirely alone with the sea, breathing in the fresh and silent air with only seagulls and piping plovers flitting about the scenery. What wintertime most often brings, though, is a little more company than this. Large dogs who need to run and play bring their owners along to watch. Visitors who have traveled some distance carry cameras and occasionally pose in front of the freezing water. Other people, whom I guess to be regulars like myself, jog and walk along the sand and the boardwalk. No matter how cold the day may be, I believe everyone must be secretly loving it.

Today I was down by the shoreline and wanted to head to the beach, but it was sleeting so I couldn’t. Actually I could have, but it would have been thoroughly miserable. Hitting the beach is weather dependent in the summer too, though. No matter the season, I always want to have the ocean nearby, to remind me that there’s more to the earth than land and sky.

16 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Love it. I go to the beach 2-3 times a day, year round. Even the worst days at the beach beat sitting, cooped-up indoors !


  2. Sabina says:

    Two to three times a day?!? I never knew that! Good for you! Maybe someday I can live like that.

  3. Janz says:

    Hi Sabina,
    Love your entry! I love the beach too. I live in the bay here in CA but its only once in a blue moon when I get to go to the beach. I miss the ocean a lot. Hmm…never thought of going to the beach when i visited the east coast again? Last time i went it was 2 months ago. Didnt really think of going when its cold! I should check that place out next time! Btw, youre really a good writer! Inspiring! I’ll visit your site from time to time! Take care!

  4. inka says:

    I hit the beach any time of the year, regardless of weather. Couldn’t agree more with your words and loved the pictures too. Will you have a look at my second blog for europe a la carte?

  5. Candice says:

    I feel the same way, I can’t IMAGINE living in a landlocked place. Water keeps me from feeling claustrophobic, I think!

  6. Sabina says:

    I know. The beach is relegated to summer life in most people’s minds – but it need not be.

    Thanks for the compliment!

  7. Sabina says:

    Yes, it’s a beautiful thing.

  8. Sabina says:

    It’s funny. I never realized truly how being landlocked felt until I got out.

  9. Nancy Harder says:

    Great post. I love visiting the beach in the wintertime-just went yesterday! I feel incredibly landlocked, like you and Candice, whenever I’m away from the ocean.

  10. Sabina says:

    All right, Nancy! Another winter-time beach go-er!

  11. neha says:

    I actually like how quiet and peaceful things are at at beach in the winter. I don’t live close to one, but I’d be a winter beach bum if I could. I can’t imagine a better setting to get your thoughts in order and write.

  12. Sabina says:

    Oh, yeah. The sound of the waves alone can be very healing.

  13. I’m definitely a water baby and love it that I now live close to the beach. One of my watery winter experiences was in Lanzarote on a freezing February day. My husband and I went to the water park and were two of a handful of people there. No queues for anything. So what if the water made our teeth chatter? They had to throw us out at the end of the day.
    .-= Sharon Hurley Hall´s last blog ..Travel Foodie Memories =-.

  14. Sabina Lohr says:

    Definitely. If you love the water it really doesn’t matter whether it’s summer or winter.

  15. Really love the beach, maybe in the future I will try to get a house near a beach, since living in a big city almost all my life has been really stressfull.
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