Articles by this author:
One of my long-term hobbies is counting the vehicles that pass east and west in front of my house two or three times a day, but almost always at noon and 6 in the evening. The latter count is now in the dark, but the noon count is fully lighted and I can separate the vehicles into various categories: sedans, S.U.V.s, pickups, buses, government vehicles, and trucks of various kinds. It’s something I’ve been doing off and on since 1980.
As Roseanne Roseannadanna used to tell us on “Saturday Night Live,” “It’s always something,” Things haven’t changed, or is that “the more things change, the more they stay the same”? We’re living in an up-and-down world, in a dynamic equilibrium. If it weren’t for the sunrises and sunsets, the phases of the moon and the clock-like rise and fall of the seas two times a day, we would be lost.
When J.P. Giraud, the American naturalist, published his book “The Birds of Long Island” in 1844, one would be hard pressed to find a single heath hen left on Long Island. Game birds such as the heath hen, Labrador duck, and passenger pigeon disappeared early, along with the wild turkey. The first three became extinct.
Every year, it seems, the traffic becomes progressively worse. More and more people come to enjoy the East End and more of us native East Enders breathe a sigh of relief and go about our business when the season comes to a close. We have six months to recover, if we ever do.