Bethany Beach, Delaware, July 16, 2017

★★★★ The half moon in the daytime sky pointed toward the Atlantic. The early day was almost cool but damp. If the shock of first stepping into the pale green waves had been any milder, it wouldn’t have been a shock. After that, there was only the slowest ebbing of warmth while bobbing in the water. The ten-year-old let himself be carried out into the swells, while the five-year-old planted himself in the surf zone, striking defensive poses and yelling challenges at the waves. A stranger’s wayward boogie board tethered itself around an ankle. The clear sky became framed with cumulus around the edges for a while, then was brushed with cirrus overhead. In the back yard, the sun never stopped shining on the swim things hung on the pulley line. The hibiscus flowers on the east side of the yard caught the late rays, while the ones on the west side drooped in the shape of resting butterflies. The boys went quietly to the fence line to see the rabbit in the neighboring yard, then played a brief but intense game of tag on the spongy lawn. The lower clouds, stretched like veins in marble, turned pink, while through them the higher ones had become pale blue.