“I find there is a quality to being alone that is incredibly precious. Life rushes back into the void, richer, more vivid, fuller than before.”
—Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Gift from the Sea
I spent three nights on Block Island last week. I wish I had been able to stay at least three more. But I enjoyed the time that I had. Block Island is tiny, a mere 10 square miles. Within the first day and a half, I had “done” the commercial district. So the remainder of my time was spent visiting the historical society museum and the Southeast Lighthouse, and walking for miles by the ocean, lakes, and ponds. Forty percent of the land on Block Island is conserved or protected, so there is much natural beauty to discover.
Oh, and the animals. Every day I visited the awesome animal farm across the street from my bed and breakfast. This is not your ordinary animal farm. This is a yak, an emu, a zedonk, llamas, alpacas, kangaroos, lemurs, tortoises, geese, ducks, chickens, goats. I can say that I pet a kangaroo on my birthday—how cool is that?
Other highlights were watching the sunset every night, having an amazing buffet breakfast every morning, and spending an afternoon in the sun reading Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Gift from the Sea. She wrote it in 1955 during a solo trip to an island off the coast of Florida. Even though she wrote it 20 years before I was born and was married with children, while I am single, I could relate to a lot of what she wrote about being a woman and “getting away from it all” by one’s self.
This was my seventh solo birthday trip. I’m the type of traveler who wants to see as many cultural and historical attractions as possible during a trip, but I always carve out a bit of time for relaxation and reflection.
I’ve now been to Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket, and Block Island. I’ve liked each island, but I believe Block Island is special because of its size. These islanders, and all of the residents before them, seem that much “scrappier” and friendlier. I can tell when my vagabond heart has fallen for a place when I am eager to plan a return visit. Until next time, Block Island…