Yesterday I went for a walk on the shrinking shores of Whidbey Island, north of Seattle, Washington. With my friends Ann, Christina and dog Gracie, we descended rickety stairs to a dodgy bulkhead to explore the ocean shore near their home, on Puget Sound.
As we walked we noticed the sandy bluffs above us, and their constant sloughing. We noticed homes on the edge. We noticed grey water drainage pipes that drain onto the bluff, accelerating erosion, accelerating the risk to their homes.
Perhaps they have a great view of the ocean and do not have a relationship with the ocean.
Perhaps they have not noticed this:
Nature erodes the shores of land. This is unavoidable and undeniable. Where we choose to settle and how we choose to settle is best done when in relationship with Nature.
Moreover, when we realize that we have a structure that is no longer useful, we have to figure out how to ensure that structure causes no harm. If this stair falls toward land, it will accelerate erosion. It will accelerate the shrinking shore, hastening peril to the homes above.
Ann and Christina’s community has to figure out how to build new stairs – I know what they won’t do.