Life-everlasting: Nature and Culture on Sapelo Island

"Though it was early morning, the day was already hot. I could smell the salty earth smell of the sea marsh that stretched out in front of us, cut by a tidal channel." Photograph courtesy of Mary Hussmann.

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Life-everlasting: Nature and Culture on Sapelo Island

by Mary Hussmann
Southern Cultures, Vol. 12, No. 1: Spring 2006

"What was most moving was that it was here that the ghosts of the people we'd read about jumped out of history and into our lives."

Though it was early morning, the day was already hot. I could smell the salty earth smell of the sea marsh that stretched out in front of us, cut by a tidal channel. The ferry, Anne Marie, sat at the end of the pier, where men busily loaded boxes and construction materials onto the open deck. Some in our party frantically dialed cell phones and made last minute calls, unsure whether they’d find service on the island. The rest of us milled around waiting to load the backpacks, suitcases, and boxes of food piled on the dock. After we had hauled our things onto the boat, I walked up to the highest deck as we churned away from shore. A few puffy clouds cast their reflections on the glassy water, and gulls wheeled in our wake. Though the trip to the island took a half hour through the tidal river and out into the sound, we were too excited to sit down and instead stood at the rails, watching as a porpoise arced alongside.

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