While I was on vacation, swimming and snorkeling in a warmer version of the very same water, the ocean was up to its old malfeasance. You’ll recall from my last post that this house was on the edge at Washaway.

70's house 7I shot some video of it with my fancy new telephone:

But now the whole thing is gone. Allow me to show you a week– no, four days–in the life.

Monday, March 3.

Monday 2


Katie, Monday

Sheet in sand, Monday

Sheet in sand, Monday

Fabric (drapes?) in sand, Monday

Fabric (drapes?) in sand, Monday

Monday 3Monday 4Monday 5Tuesday, March 4:

Tuesday video, 9.8 tide:


See? Only hacks use umbrellas.

overturned tree and mossTuesday 1Tuesday 2Tuesday 3Tuesday 4Wednesday, March 5:


A message to the ocean.

A message to the ocean.Wednesday 4

chunks of grass

Spruce St

Spruce Street

Wednesday 1Wednesday 2

A picnic house, further down the beach.

A picnic house, further down the beach.

WednesdayThursday, March 6:

No picnic.

No picnic.

Thursday 2

Willy B. Next.

Willy B. Next.

Thursday 4

Erosion control techniques: Rockpile Peninsula Project.

Thursday 5

Senja Antilla, who makes assemblage-mosaics of Washaway houses, on the hunt.

Senja Antilla, who makes wood assemblage-mosaics from Washaway houses, harvesting.

Thursday 6Thursday 7

Only the foundation remains.

Only the foundation remains.

more signageYou would think, after twelve years, I would be used to this. But I still find it very scary and sad and humbling and profound. I have property here, too, so it’s personal, and denial is essential.


And yet, inexplicably, there is the hopefulness that accompanies the first whiff of spring.

cloud of birds


About washybeach

Washaway Beach This Week is a blog by photojournalist Erika Langley. See more work at
This entry was posted in Tides-A-Com'n. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Meltaway

  1. Tony O. says:

    Loveless waves leveling the land as relentless and loathsome as The Langoliers.

  2. Vintage Baseball says:

    thanks for the update on your blog. I’ve attached a few photos I took. i was down in late November and thought that house could go soon. my next visit was February and the house had fallen over. I was back last weekend and drove down to see if anything was left of it but nothing left. Joel

    Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2014 21:37:55 +0000 To:

  3. Sharman Ballantine says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your photography of our shoreline. What you said is so true…it is sad to watch memories slide into the sea and yet beauty persists whether flying by or washing up on shore.

  4. 2nd/grade says:

    Hi Erica, I’ve been coming to this area since the early sixties. We have seen so much disappear into the waves during that time like it never existed. I used to wish we had gotten property closer to the ocean, but if we had, it would be gone now. For whom does the bell toll? I know it tolls for me and it is getting harder to watch each season. I loved your line that denial is essential.

  5. Tayler says:

    To start with, thank you for posting this page as I have been trying to find something remotely close online to show a friend in Australia about the area we live in. I have some photos I have recently taken of this same area just last week, so this perfect to show what just a few short months of erosion has done…My husband and I have been bringing our children out each year since the early 2000’s to show them the wrath of Mother Nature and each time we visit, my heart goes out to each person that has lost years and years of hard work and memories..What stands out in my mind is when we were out here last week, we came across one of the houses in this blog and there was a woman and her little dog enjoying the sun on top of a huge pile of rubble..It saddened me to think that it must have been her home at one time and she was reliving all the memories from her life…

  6. Pam c. says:

    You have done a beautiful documentary both visual and verbal. Thank you.

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