Volume 12, Issue 28 ~ July 8-14, 2004
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Ten Reasons to Pipe Down and Get in the Water
Enough said.

To borrow a phrase from Bill Burton, we’ve said enough and read enough about all that’s wrong with Chesapeake Bay. This week, we’re declaring a moratorium on Bay dissing. We’re filling this space instead with our annual Top Ten reasons we love Chesapeake Bay.

10. You can swim the Bay. At this moment, swimming is the best we’ve seen in two decades with water cool, clear and (where we swim) free of jellyfish.

9. You can float your boat. From yacht to john boat; from Sunfish to sloop; from inner tube to rubber raft; from skull to rowboat; from kayak to canoe — the Bay doesn’t care. She’ll float whatever you bring to her.

8. You can catch your dinner. If you haven’t the patience to troll for abundant rockfish in the 18- to 28-inch range, you can drift over fishing holes for a dependable bounty of spot, croaker, perch and other meaty delights rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids.

7. You can get crabby. A crustacean we know in this month of the crab gave us this tip: “Rumors of our demise are greatly exaggerated.” With chicken-neck, trot-line or pot, you can catch ’em. Then you can cook ’em and (with beer to drink) eat ’em.

6. You can commune with strange species. (And we don’t mean other boaters.) The cow-nose rays are flapping; the eels are oozing; the oysters are spawning; the minnows are shimmering; the turtles are surfacing. Creatures out there as odd and remote as space dwellers, but occasionally they send up emissaries that can make your day.

5. You can make your living on the Bay. You can crab, fish, charter, pilot, guide, research, mend sails, tend boats — and whatever you do, you’ll do it amid the Bay’s beauty and serenity.

4. You can find family fun. You can puddle on the shore with babies, erect sandcastles with toddlers, build bonfires with teens, ski, sunbathe, beach comb; find fossils, toss Frisbees and enjoy fun for everyone — even the dog.

3. You can see amazing sights. The Bay beckons with sunrises and sunsets to beautiful shorelines; sparkling water painted with palates of color; giant tankers and tiny thongs.

2. You can get inspired. The Bay irresistibly provokes response. We human admirers reply in painting, drawing, photographing, carving and writing.

1. You can lose your troubles.

© COPYRIGHT 2004 by New Bay Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved.