Friday, August 22, 2008
New Point Light
This is New Point Light, very close to the scene where I was caught trespassing the other day. People just don't understand what a woman could possibly be doing standing in the middle of a road with a camera, when 10 signs in plain view clearly state, "No Trespassing." I'm not sure I even understand it. The land depicted here, however, is public property. Just wanted to toss that out there.
Perhaps one of the most recognized landmarks in Mathews, the lighthouse at New Point is accessible only by boat although it is open to the public. So, if you happen to find yourself visiting Mathews, and you manage to make your way all the way down New Point, bring your hip boots (to wade through the marsh) and a bathing suit if you want to go to the light house, unless you remembered to bring your boat.
I would travel with my boat all the time, except it is full of water and sinking. And it's only 3 years old. I am personally full of water and hot air, plus everything on me is sinking, but I'm 43 and that is to be expected.
The lighthouse was authorized by Congress in 1801, and I could have sworn there was a connection to Thomas Jefferson. Maybe I just dreamed that. No! For once my memory is not failing me. I just found a brochure that says Jefferson commissioned it in 1804. Have I mentioned that I love Thomas Jefferson? He might be the one person besides Jane Austen I would like to talk to if I could pick anyone dead or alive to talk to. He was such a Renaissance Man. I love Renaissance Men. I think he would have been too short for me, though, but we're just talking about having a conversation, not a relationship, neither of which is going to happen.
Where was I? Oh. The lighthouse.
I have a book called Images of America Mathews County, written by Sarah Lewis. In it there is a picture of this lighthouse before storms eroded the land connecting it to the mainland. Just to the left was a keeper’s house (it was a two story farmhouse-type dwelling), and there was a sandy beach with a few pine trees.
Looking at it now, it seems impossible that all that existed. Hell hath no fury like Mother Nature when she’s in a bad mood, and, in 1933, somebody must have really pissed her off, because she let a hurricane loose that took care of any remnants of land connecting to the mainland. Folks still talk about The Great Storm of 1933 as if it happened yesterday.
As many years as I’ve spent in Mathews, I have never been to the lighthouse. I have never been on the Mobjack Bay. As long as we’re on the subject (where subject = things I’ve never done), I have never had the chicken pox, have never been called for jury duty, and never understood why you aren’t supposed to rip the label off a mattress.
And to keep with my predilection* for straying from any and all topics, what have you never done? Leave me a comment so when I come home from work tonight I'll have something to entertain me after 12 hours with no internet access.
*I had to look this word up to make sure I knew what on Earth it meant. Also, the first time I wrote it, I spelled it "predeliction," which proves I wasn't entirely sure I knew what I was talking about. I rarely do.