This morning I was thinking about a trip Paul and I took to Edisto Beach, South Carolina some years ago.

When we arrived late at night, mystified about how to find our rental unit in the dark, the security guard held up his hand.

“Don’t get out of your car!” he said. Then, as if surprised by the vehement sounds that had shot into the dark, he added more softly but with a detectable slur, “I’ve had the flu.”

We woke to the sound of gently lapping waves. I peered through white blinds at “pipers” running their long spiky legs along the wet sand, pecking for food through the shallow water.

Light. Ocean. Fresh air. Birds.

One day on my rental bike, I pedaled the front shore and back lanes with my note pad in my pocket studying the summer cottages, which mostly carried FOR SALE signs. I tied to figure out why. Surely these summer residences were worth a lot. Maybe that was the point. Investment value. Resale value. But what about the value of family memories? Would that be so easy to give up?

In one or two words, the names of these summer cottages told their own stories:

At Last
High Maintenance
Just Us
Dune Dancing
Yes Indeed
Not too Shabby
Side by Side
The Last Resort
Dream Weaver
Cast Our Fate
Sea Song
Total Amnesia