Friday, July 31, 2009

Two Days After Chincoteague's Pony Penning '09

The ponies are gone. I missed the auction but what ponies that didn't sell were taken back to Assateague today to run free and wild as nature intended. I'm sure a few of them if not all were a bit shaken up from the experience and I'm hoping they are very adaptable.

Tourists are still here, but they'll weed out in another week and it will be almost like it was before summer tourist season started.

I talk about tourists like they're the most annoying things but I guess there must be some good points of having them here. I would say for the local businesses but if you look really closely, most businesses are owned by people who cater to the tourists because once the tourists leave, the shops close up which is confusing to me. It's like they don't care about the locals or maybe it's a money thing.

There are a few that stay open - the local grocery store, the post office of course, a few convenience stores. Dollar General stays open as do a few restaurants like Bill's (my favorite). Bill's Restaurant is located on Main Street and maybe my taste palates are different from yours but that food is the bomb. I can get a pound of large steamed shrimp for $11.00 which I often take home and eat out on the deck. There's a McDonald's of course and there's a pharmacy and maybe a few other businesses but the surf stores all close down.

AJ's stays open all year round but I honestly can say I've never been there. Oh yes, Don's is open all year round but it's been a long time since I've been in there, too. I stick mainly to Bill's. You can't go wrong.

When summer ends, the island reverts back to the locals. We have a few tourists that try to get in one last vacation trip before school starts and of course there are the bird watchers who descend upon the island in the fall.

But, it's great. No more sharing your dock. I can walk the dog in peace without kids yelling from the balconies, "Here doggie doggie!" Pfft.

It goes back to being paradise.

I'm sitting in my office right now. It's on the 3rd floor of our condo and a room all my own. I cut the air off for a little while and opened the window to hear the thunderstorm slowly making its way across the island. You can hear the thunder in the distance and the rain pellets dancing in the marsh weeds. The smell you wish you could bottle up forever.

It's peaceful.

I have a few more pony pictures to show you that my daughter and son took before they sent the unsold ponies packing, but I want you to see these beautiful creatures. This is after the ponies arrived at the carnival grounds and before the auction.



  1. Right now my town is hosting the Western Regional Softball Tournament for 14 year old girl teams from Idaho, Washington, Oregon, California and Hawaii. There are over 800 ball players and their families. All the area campgrounds are full as are hotels & motels from 50 miles north of Mount Vernon to 50 miles south of Mount Vernon. The tournament ends tomorrow and soon after that they will mostly be gone but during the week they are a big economic boon to the area and so far haven't caused any problems that I've seen. I don't know if I'd like to have been playing softball last Wednesday when the local temperature went to over 100, but they are young and did. My cousin in Yuma says the same thing you do about the seasonal visitors to his community. They complain a bit about all the Snowbirds but you know, in the summer we get the retired locals from Arizona up here. They are kind of reverse Snowbirds. I guess it all balances out in the end.

  2. Every place has some kind of tourist attraction. We have Arlington Park and next weekend is the Arlington Million.
    Still, your place sounds very intriguing.

    Morgan Mandel

  3. I am missing Chincoteague, I want to go back. The last time we were there was in January for my 30th birthday. I love Bills, they were great about my son's (and my) dairy allergy! I only went to Don's once but it was pretty gross. I liked Mr. Baldy's a lot though :)

  4. I've never actually been to Mr. Baldy's but my kids have with their father. My daughter and her father like to go there on Sunday mornings. I know one thing...when I ride my bike there any time of day, the smells are o.m.g.


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