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What a Winter!

Dearest K (8), R (7), G (5), and J (5), Wow! Look closely at that picture! This is the stairway we all walked down to get to the Sandwich Town Beach to wade or swim or skip rocks in the water. Why is the stairway so torn apart and covered with ice? Because a few days ago a blizzard arrived on Cape Cod. It left so much snow on the ground that the top of the snow touched Koko's belly, and where it was shoveled out of my driveway, a huge pile of snow was even over Koko's head, and he is a BIG dog.

The wind blew so hard (60 miles an hour, which is very hard and fast for wind) that it pushed big waves up onto the Sandwich beach where we walked last summer. The waves came crashing onto shore so big and high and strong that they broke the boards of the stairway we walked down. All along the beach are stairways like this, just hanging in the air. The sand underneath them is all blown away. The land in front of houses near the water has disappeared, so people have no front yard any more. Or worse -- part of their house is hanging in the air, like the stairs.

BUT VERY WORST is that the wind blew so hard and so long, and the waves crashed so long and so hard onto the beach that they washed away sand dunes that were as tall as a house. Where did all that sand go? Tons of it blew into the little tidal river that R and G swam in this summer, and where their Daddy paddled his paddle board.

Remember where we watched the tide creep in (or creep out, I can't remember)? Now the tide is

blocked by all that sand from coming in or going out there. Now I can stand right where you were swimming, where the saltwater creek was last summer, except now it is a beach. I found a little clump of beach grass and brought it home. (That is what I am carrying in the picture below of me.) I remember talking with you all about how important the beach grass is because it holds the beach sand in place. But last week the wind and the waves blew so much beach grass away, in some places there is no grass and no sand.

What will happen? People here are worried and sad about the destruction at our beach. Some are writing letters to newspapers and officials and to each other, and they are taking lots of pictures. What can be done to help preserve the beach? The tidal creek? The stairs? The boardwalk? The houses?

And they are worried about something else. Do you know that the boardwalk creek flows completely through the whole marsh, from Cape Cod Bay nearly to the village. Some people are worried about what will happen if the beach disappears and suddenly nothing stops the sea from coming all the way up to the village buildings.

My goodness, it sounds complicated doesn't it? And it is complicated. This is why people need to try to learn about nature and understand how it works. Was there something we could have done to protect the beach? Maybe we should have tried harder to understand how important it is to our homes and our town and our lives.

I don't know what will happen next, but I will write again and let you know. I know ALL of you are good writers, so maybe you could write to me and tell me what you think about this situation!! I would LOVE to hear from you!

With LOTS of love!!


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