She Finally Got Up her Nerve and Plunged In

The sultry afternoon lingered as we remained on vacation time…watches left on the bureau, looking only at that spot of white on my wrist. Walking through Edgartown, to the Reading Room, perched on its own causeway in the harbor, ‘no trespassing signs’ delineating the places where only Members are welcome. Cummings Way Neighbor Anne MacKenzie once told me what it takes to become a member and thus be eligible to put on Nantucket red pants and a tie and sip a cocktail at their Thursday parties. “You have to have three people who are in the club nominate you. Oh well.

We drove to the bridge that connects Edgartown and Oak Bluffs, where a high wooden railing beckons. We saw a mom and her two kids, she gripping the metal sign, that said ‘no diving’ waiting to get up the nerve to jump. I clambored up, and feeling the 90 degree heat, just up and jumped, delicious in my splash into the channel that was sluicing inward to Seggaponet Pond. She couldn’t rally her nerve, and stood up there, in her modest pink suit, while her kids kept jumping in again and again.

We crossed over to the other beach, and looked across the rocks. My friend Jack got into a wetsuit and I told him it looked like 1890. Across the channel, all of the cars were for regular folks, they were old minivans and super old Volvos. This beach was where the workers who do drywall, and paint ceilings and drive truck come, and there they were, throwing a huge stick for a german shepard to retrieve, against the waves.

45 minutes later, she finally got the nerve, and jumped joyously into the water, with her eyes closed. Bravo Mom! Her kids shouted and she bobbed to the surface and wiped her face, and then she smiled.