Shipshape on Hilton Head Island


We landed on Hilton Head Island a little over ten days ago. As curious as it may sound we today concluded our residential rental arrangement here for next year’s winter season (2016 – 17).  While there would appear to be no particular urgency to the matter, it is not sous-entendu that the place one desires will necessarily be available for five uninterrupted months. The longer one waits, the more likely it is that there may arise interim rentals during that five-month stretch (especially around the American Thanksgiving, Christmas and March Break). Naturally if one doesn’t give a damn about one property in particular, or if one feels adventurous about letting things unfold as they may, then there is no need whatever to direct one’s mind to such detail. We however prefer some certainty. We are not cavalier about where we’ll end up. After traveling here for five years, we know the Island tolerably well and, although I am the first to agree that the entire Island is superb, we nonetheless know where we do and do not prefer to be. And quite frankly most interlopers such as we haven’t the prospect of being here for five months so the forward planning is obviously of less significance.


The place we’ve decided upon is in the same building in South Beach on South Sea Pines Drive where we now are, almost at Land’s End.  Except for the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday periods this is an exceptionally quiet area of Sea Pines in particular and the Island in general. We also appreciate the fact that the condominium is so situated that when we fulfill our daily regiment of bicycling we can virtually travel from one end of the Island to the other.

1827 Beachside Tennis, Sea Pines, Hilton Head Island

It is too tedious to reiterate what else we like about this place.  Sufficient it is to observe that we’re clapping ourselves on the back for having negotiated the contract.  Though we wouldn’t trivialize the subtlety of one’s residence, neither do we obscure the bigger picture by failing to make critical – and of course informed – decisions.  We want to get on with it. By removing any fuss over that particular refinement we’re better enabled to attend to all those other inconsequential trifles which will undoubtedly monopolize our attention soon enough.  Say what you will, we’re never ones to shy from resolve.  Life is so much less killing without knock-kneed prevarication.


I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky…John Masefield

Normally I wouldn’t presume to take credit for what I consider to be just plain good luck.  However, there is upon analysis room for some credit.  Specifically we are careful not to make a move until we know where we’re going.  It isn’t a crap shoot; it’s a calculated choice. Sometimes – as in the case of our alliance with Hilton Head Island – we’ve been assisted by others.  We had never heard of Hilton Head Island until my sister-in-law (EH) recommended it to us.  We were lunching together at Les Fougères in Chelsea, PQ.  She told us that she and her husband golfed on Hilton Head Island.  The serendipity of that intelligence was that most recently we had spent time in Boca Raton, FLA and we were pretty much convinced that we weren’t going back there, not because there was anything wrong with it, just that there was nothing there for us in particular.  We had also previously exhausted our interest in the Caribbean and the Mayan Riviera.  We didn’t see any long-term commitment to those places. Hilton Head Island had the persuasive advantage that we could get there by car.  This was important because we had also lost our affection for air travel.

So here we are, shipshape on Hilton Head Island, eating crab cakes and salads, dog-tired from bicycling and glowing from the afternoon sunshine, two complacent old fogeys. And I adore being so close to the Atlantic Ocean, hearing the sounds of the gulls and waves. The only contamination is some powdered white sand from the beach!