this is shelter island. it is located between the north and south forks of long island. well that's what the locals say. i say it's in the crotch of long island.
shelter island got its name from some group of indians (native americans) a long time ago. "the indians called shelter island "manhansack-aha-quashawomock", which means "an island sheltered by islands". and that is exactly what makes this island so special." (i stole that from osprey's online guide). it was originally settled by the manhassett indians in 1652. if you look on the map at the tip of the south fork, you'll see montauk. (if any of you value the movie eternal sunshine of the spotless mind, you'll be excited by this little factoid... "meet me in montauk...")
anyway, shelter island can only be reached by boat. there are ferries that run between it and long island that bring all the cars over. the two islands are really not that far from each other, so of course my first question was why don't they just build a couple of bridges? the answer: exclusivity. these people love their secret, hard to reach hideaway. and i have to admit, it is pretty cool. it also means zero crime rate. all the people out here leave their cars and houses unlocked. it's kind of in the same category as lookout mtn., only even more ridiculously separated from the world.
sarcastic remarks aside, it is a beautiful place. it's very relaxed, and even the "fabulously wealthy" wear wrinkled shirts. i was sitting out front of vsc the other night and a couple came riding up on their bicycles. yes, they were there to eat dinner. i've even seen a couple of people bring their dogs with them to the restaurant (i know that just thrills you, mom). we do ask that they sit outside. sorry pooches.
so, i thought i would take some "artsy" photos of my current and very temporary residence. but then i realized: how do you candy coat a hell-hole? and yes i do mean "h-e-double-hockey-stick" hole. my front porch being the entrance to this castle, well, it speaks for itself. so to explain: picture #1 = front porch; picture #2 = my boudoir (notice the two fans in the upper left hand corner of the picture... when turned on to full blast they provide a sound barrier between me and the party kids coming in at 4am); picture #3 is the lovely kitchen (the girl being melanie, my rockin' cool roommate... i'm not being sarcastic either: she IS rockin' cool and makes fantastic desserts at vine street cafe, hereafter being referred to as vsc).
this is my residence, my abode, my kingdom. (and i thought andy's house was bad... jk, d)
i'm in new york now. i flew into jfk international airport at 4:00 yesterday. chris and sydney picked me up in a beat up red subaru and we were off! flying out of the airport, taxi drivers honking everywhere, all of us on edge. oh new york city! you are a special place! we drove out of the city towards the eastern edge of long island, the dirtiness eventually fading into a very tybee island like coast. after about an hour and a half, we were on a ferry crossing over to shelter island, then on to vine street cafe, the place that i am working at, to have dinner. chris immediately started introducing me to guests as his "new assistant manager." oh yes, that's me! dirty, tired, haven't brushed my teeth since before i left north carolina earlier that day. "hi, nice to meet you. don't worry, i do clean up well. your hundreds of dollars spent on food will be safe in my hands. you can trust the dirty southern girl..."
that all being said, i did get some sleep last night, realizing before i hopped into my temporary sleeping arrangements (i swore i would never lay my head down in a bunk bed again, but oh well) that i had left my toothbrush in the hotel in north carolina. after buying a new one today and having lunch with my new boss and his girlfriend, i had time to do my devotions and reflect over the past few weeks.
so, they have been quite busy. i finished up my summer at day camp and said goodbye to all the great kids i've had the pleasure of working with this summer. i've been to three weddings, my brother's taking the cake although they have ALL been beautiful. i put in my notice at work, got a new job up here and moved out of my house. there have been people coming out of the woodwork left and right to encourage me along and people that i've been blessed to encourage as well. i've been able to spend time with all the people that i love in chattanooga, having dinner together, going out to lunch together, making cider together, hanging out on front and back porches together, having coffee together, drinking wine together, laughing together, praying together... and most importantly our most gracious Lord has also given me the opportunity to heal two very crucial relationships. i've been looking through my photos taken yet again realizing that i have been so blessed with knowing and learning from so many amazing people. it's pretty cool, really.
this post is devoted to pictures of my last few weeks. i love you all, my friends and family!