Day Two - Monday October 25th, 2010 Fowler Shack







Woke up this morning at 7:45 despite having set my new ($6.99 @ Target) battery operated alarm clock for 6:00. Thought it would be a good idea to get in the habit of early waking to see every day’s Cape Cod sunrise, but I was too late today. I suspect that I did not hear the very weak chime of the clock over the ear plugs I had stuffed into my head before hitting the pillow. I wear ear plugs in NYC occasionally when I need to drown out the 24 hour noise of 6th Avenue 16 floors below our apartment. In this case I brought them to smooth the transition to the extreme silence of the dunes. I remembered from my 2007 stay at C-Scape, that trying to fall asleep with the natural soundtrack of the shack could be difficult – creaking sounds of the wooden frame, scurrying rodents under the shack and amidst the beams over head. Not to mention the howl of coyotes and even once the sound of a group of them racing around the shack.

Well, either way I did manage to get 10 hours of sleep! Can’t remember the last time I achieved this. Certainly not when John and I have been sleeping in the same bed. Multiplying the amount of sleepers in a bedroom has always meant dividing the number of good sleep hours for me. This is not John’s fault, but I think rather my body’s ability to sense an opportunity for my sleep demons to have an audience. I hope I don’t sleepwalk here. There is a bed here, but last night I slept in a sleeping bag on top of the bed. It is my hope that the constraints of the zippered confines will deter any sleep related movement.

Overnight, the temperature rose considerably. This was a good thing, because the fire log left burning probably didn’t take long to extinguish once I’d fallen asleep.

Walking over the high crest of sand behind the shack this morning with a cup of coffee in hand, I was greeted by the Atlantic Ocean and not a single person in either direction as far as my eyes could see. I decide I’ll spend every morning this way while I’m here. What A meditative way to begin a new day and a new week. If I were in Manhattan I would still be asleep right now.

Another part of the day here is spent pumping water. There is a well located beneath the shack and a pump (pictured) that rises out of the earth as a revelation of modernity. Near the pump are several gallon jugs and two buckets filled with “prime” water. In order to get water to flow freely from the pump, you must slowly pour a steady stream of water into the pump with one hand while simultaneously pumping the crank with your other hand. There is a strip of leather located within the pump which needs to get wet in order to create the proper suction to force the water from the well. Cranking the pump at first creates a gasping echo sound, but after about a minute of doing this consistently, you can feel something catch and soon enough crystal clear water is pours from the water spout -- A very satisfying feeling!! First I refill the prime buckets and jugs, and then I fill several 2.5 gallon sized Poland Spring water cubes (the ones with the plastic spigots). These containers of well water will be used to wash dishes, etc. The water hasn’t been tested, so I was instructed to bring a gallon of water per day for drinking and cooking. You reconsider the amount of water you need to use when you have to haul it back up the sand hill to your shack.