Saturday, September 6, 2008
Shells - Tiny Shells
Each year when we have been on vacation at the Jersey shore we have made an annual trip down Rt. 35 to Ernies Bait and Tackle Shop in Normandy Beach. When I was a child my Aunt Lucille and Uncle Don had a house in Normandy. Being from a family of 7, at that time it was out of the question for us to rent a place to stay so my aunt and uncle would let us stay at their house for one or two weeks during the summer. My father loved to surf fish. He would frequent Ernies shop during those weeks and in later years, after my aunt and uncle sold the house and moved to Florida, he would still go there on weekends in the fall with my brother Robert to buy lures to fish in the surf at Island Beach, not too far from there.
My aunt and uncle didn't move until after we were married, so my husband was familiar with the house and the beach there and got his initiation into surf fishing with my father. Later on, after we had children, we would rent a house down the shore and my parents would stay with us for a week and we would stay a second week on our own. During those times, there were many bluefish caught.
Dad is gone now and my brother hasn't been fishing in years. And although my husband does most of his fishing off the dock now (with a much smaller pole and a bobber), we still take that trip to Ernies to see if maybe there is a new pole or tackle that might be necessary to add to the collection.
Whether he finds his new fishing toys or not makes no difference to me because there is another treasure there at Ernies that never ceases to intrigue me. They have baskets and boxes and bags full of shells. Oh, they are all sorted by type, size, and even by color. But they are so beautiful to look at. There are so many different types and textures. Who can resist picking up a smooth shell with a leopard pattern and running their fingers over it? Or holding the conch shell up to your ears to hear the ocean?
I usually pick up one or two shells to set on my windowsill above the sink at home, but this time I decided to go for some tiny bagged shells. I thought that I could use them in my cards. As you can see in the pictures above, I was drawn to mostly pink ones.
I've always been attracted to the tiny shells, even when shelling on the beach. I'm afraid that my shelling days are not what they used to be however, between the eyes and the back. When we walked to the point at Barnegat Lighthouse I couldn't resist looking nonetheless and I did find some, but those little treats are nestled at the bottom of the bag of "stuff" that HWNSNBP was picking up on the beach and, at the moment, I don't know where that bag went.
But, today I stumbled across my little treasures and I hope you enjoy the pictures.