Memories of summers spent at our beach house in Essex, Massachusetts will always be a strong part of my idea of what summer should be like. The house was a ramshackle shack made of boards leftover from my maternal Grandfather’s house building business leftovers. He made the shell in two parts in their backyard, rented a lot on Conomo Point in Essex, and plopped it down one spring years and years ago.
We lost our beach house due to rent-to-maybe-own changes on the land on New Year’s Day 2012. I’m sure it’s probably still standing there now, full of memories from my family, abandoned at the end of a short seashore lane, overcome by weeds and vines. In fact, there are two broken boats abandoned in those tenacious vines, too, that haven’t seen the light of day in almost a decade. It’s a complicated story for anyone who owned a home on Conomo Point.
While talking about the beach house is rife with sadness and bitterness, it’s also full of wonderful sunshiny memories of my childhood. As I got older and spent more time there, it started the sink in that the house was going to be gone in just a few years. I started to cling to the physical things I could, one of which was a beautiful beautiful glass with a seagull pattern.
We had two of them, left over from when my Grandfather and Nana were alive. It was magical to think that my family history was wrapped up in these simple objects. Stories had been shared over them, laughs, and possibly even tears similar to my own at the thought of losing part of my home.
My last stay at the beach house, I shattered one of the two glasses while opening a bottle. When my parents closed up the beach house for the last time, I asked for a few things to be sent to me in Arkansas, the most important of which was the last seagull glass.
Every so often, I look on places like Etsy and Ebay, searching for mates to my lone glass. While I’ve never found one, I stumbled on to this pitcher a few days ago that matches it exactly.
Normally, I would never spent $40 on a small glass pitcher. So why can I justify this purchase? It’s a wonderfully sentimental thing that I would kick myself years later for not purchasing. It would be a deep regret for me, considering the family history tied up into my lone glass.