October - the glorious month when Carmel breaks free from the immovable summer pileup of fog and tourist visitors. Residents stoll the sunny, breezy beach accompanied by doggie companions. Long-faced students gaze from classroom windows, vaguely sensing the unfairness of their recent darkly chilled summer vacations.
Yesterday, descending the stone steps at the Thirteenth Street beach, I observed a gray haired man in a woolen blazer, pipe in mouth, tossing a tennis ball for his exuberant black lab as they progressed liesurely along the surf line. Glancing up at tree-lined Scenic Drive, I tried to envision what that once houseless, treeless grassy field along the sand would be like today had Robinson Jeffers not planted his hundreds of cypress seedlings so many years ago. To the visitor it must appear that once upon a time the forest naturally grew to the edge of the sea. And that most of the houses that appear old really are.
October 8, 2008