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Day 24, midmorning  . . . fog reduced visibility to half mile or less along the beach and tower, and given my dose of Christian upbringing, I hoped I would tell a resurrection story, but alas, as I got close,

Le Papillon still rode the swells of sand,

piloted by wishful thinkers.

Moving on beach billows gets one nowhere, and I prepared to head off the beach, until I noticed

beyond the crowd, an unusual visitor, who

inspected the starboard hull,  moving and then lying a long period,

ear to the ground, seeming to divine–or attempt to–

the fate of the schooner.

It ambled around the stranded ocean voyager, conjecturing and

contemplating and

cajoling it to

follow it seaward.  All my ears could tell was that seal encouragement was ignored by the schooner just as much as human encouragement was convincing this seal to return to the water.

More seriously, the seal is believed to be a juvenile male gray seal, about four months old, healthy though tired, which would–if left unmolested–return to its watery realm.

Yes, I took these fotos with a zoom and avoided interfering with a marine mammal.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp on Easter, 2011.  Click here to see how saltaire38 ties this seal to a Fire Island tradition.

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Graves of Arthur Kill

Click to order your copy of Graves of Arthur Kill, by Gary Kane and Will Van Dorp. 3Fish Productions.

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