It’s Tuesday evening, 6:32 p.m., the tail end of another sublime day under the sea pines and palm trees on Hilton Head Island. Although the temperature didn’t climb much above 60°F today the sky was blue and the sunshine brilliant. After our routine (though somewhat truncated) 2½-hour bicycle ride this morning I rewarded myself by lounging by the pool in the warm mid-afternoon sunshine. I dozed for about half an hour, a much needed recuperation. Afterwards I showered and dressed then went shopping for a duvet (“down alternative”) and a bath mat. Now as the day at last winds down we’re perched at the dining room table in front of our respective MacBook Pro computers, sipping Perrier and S.Pellegrino listening to Benny Goodman on Spotify. The remarkably true sound is being piped through our Bose Mini Soundlink. We’re basically having left-overs for dinner tonight. I was overly enthusiastic in the grocery stores in the past couple of days and bought rather more than we needed. We’ll attempt to put a dent in what we have before going to Fresh Market to indulge ourselves in those marvellous crab cakes! The grocery aisles will be a dangerous place in the next 48 hours as everyone here prepares for the American Thanksgiving feast. Kroger’s (parenthetically founded by Bernard Kroger in 1883 in Cincinnati, Ohio and now the country’s largest supermarket chain by revenue, about $103B in 2014) condescended to assist in this matter by remaining open 24-hours a day for the next two days. Clearly that place will be one to avoid for the moment though I suspect Fresh Market and Harris Teeter won’t be any different. It is impossible to ignore the sudden swell of people on the Island. The bike paths now teem with cyclists, often congregations of entire families on bicycles, trycycles and tandems. I am yet surprised that there continue to be so may people walking on the beach. I would find it irresistible to watch people flying by on their bicycles.
We’ve agreed that we are close to having exhausted ourselves. It has been just over a week since we arrived on the Island (November 16th). Getting settled in our digs has demanded more than we credit. It certainly hasn’t been an unpleasant effort, but like setting up residence anywhere, there are things to do, lots of them, and our constant preoccupation has clearly exacted more of us than we imagined.