Time keeps elapsing though, even (or especially) when you aren't sure what day of the week it is. July gives way to August, and the skies darken way too early in the evening. President Obama and his family leave once again, a hurricane glances the Island, college students return to school and then summer ends, without fanfare, like a neglected bonfire at a beach party.
It was in this mood that I decided to set out in search of how others felt on these last blissful days before fall carries so many back to their other lives.
David LeBreton, the largely unflappable, always articulate owner of Edgartown Books, is usually the last of his family to leave the Island for winter. Therefore he is usually the one to close up shop and find storage for his family's summer gear. Rather than regard the task as a burden, Mr. LeBreton takes pleasure in the extra couple of days he gets to spend on Island.
"For a few days I find myself alone and reflective and busy, and prefer it that way," he said. "Unlike the endless nuisance of opening things up in June, I enjoy the quiet solitude of September chores."
This is his time to "contemplate and be grateful for a lifetime of utter contentment on the rock."
Mr. LeBreton's last stop at the end of summer is the Edgartown cemetery, "to let departed old friends and family know that all is well, that I'll be back soon."
Kristin Santangelo who works at Stefanie Wolf Designs in Oak Bluffs is a wisp of a girl with a thunderous singing voice befitting someone two or three times her size. She once sang for this writer on the sidewalk above Inkwell Beach, creating such a stunning performance that strangers stopped and applauded.
I share my dream of an infinite summer with her and she relates.
"Summer's very important," she says. "My most vivid memories are from summers. It's when the most stuff happens in my life."