A rake, a basket, a mud flat, and if you’re so inclined, a license.
Take what you need for dinner, eat them before the next low tide. I put the smallest and the largest back into the flat, tucking them into the mud, keeping a promise made years ago to my niece who loves clams but not killing.
November can be kind, but more often than not, the dying light is unkind to those creatures that depend on the sun.
But the creatures keep moving, and so do I, to the rhythm of the tides and the pull of the rake, one life feeding on another, grace for one, the abyss for the other.
The chair was made by a local man. We bought two, the price not cheap, but was more than fair, and he was surprised we opted not to oil them. We like to see things age as much as we do, and, in the local way of acceptance that is under-rated, he nodded and went on his way.
Because we chose not to oil our chairs, they have turned grey and are covered by lichen. They are now over a decade old, and will likely last another 5. With oil, they may have outlived us.
When we need new ones, we’ll seek the same man. We do not need chairs to outlive us. That’s what plastic is for.
Because we chose not to oil them a decade ago, I got to see a wasp explore the lichen, which might not seem like much, but I enjoyed seeing that a wasp could be as easily fooled as a human.
We are all easily fooled–life is foolish, in the best sense of the word.