Assateague Island // Pt. 2
Read Pt. 1
I grew up reading a book series about wild ponies on the small islands of Assateague and Chincoteague. As a little girl, there was almost nothing more magical than a beach filled with wild ponies; it was someplace that I had dreamed of visiting. Then one day, I moved to Maryland and realized that these islands were only two hours from my house. This place I had dreamed about was within my reach! Time went on and I still hadn't visited, and the time for me to move was drawing closer. As I mentioned this to two dear friends, they offered to go with me. Well, not only did they offer, but they planned the entire thing! All I had to do was show up and my dream would come true.
We camped in a beautiful area near Snow Hill, Maryland, then headed over to Assateague Island early the next morning. On the way, we stopped at a charming little farmers market for some fresh produce to snack on throughout the day. When we arrived at the beach, I felt like a kid at Disneyland. I spent my day gathering sea shells and sea glass, sitting at the edge of the beach- close enough for the water to wash over me as it came in with each wave, and breathing in as much of that salt air as I could.
I waited patiently for the ponies and made sure my friends knew I wouldn't leave until I had seen them; it was the entire point of the trip, after all. And just as the sun started to set, a few of them appeared on the horizon. They walked through the beach without care, stealing food from unsuspecting beach-goers as they went. Then just before they disappeared again behind a sand dune, they paused, as if they knew I had waited all day, or my entire life, for this moment. I clicked a few pictures, and then they were gone.
My experience with the ponies was a small one, but I couldn't have asked for more. The feeling of checking that off my bucket list was wonderful one. I do hope to visit again, one day. Perhaps I'll drive alone, early in the morning before the sun rises, when the ponies are more likely to be out.