What's With Plum Island?

Listening to the locals talk about Plum Island, the village, I expected something a little nicer than what we found when we drove out there yesterday. I guess I need to distinguish between Plum Island the nature preserve and Plum Island the village.

The Plum Island nature preserve is wonderful. Absolutely. Undeniably. Walking along the beach is simply delightful. And I expect that come summer, it will be even nicer. The salt marsh has a lonely beauty this time of year, but even in the dead of winter it’s not inactive: we saw several water birds and heard rumours of a snowy owl in the neighbourhood.

The village of Plum Island is a dump. There are some nice houses, but there are some real shacks ready to fall over in the next big storm. Although it has some of the feel of the North Carolina outer banks, it pales in comparison. We saw only two restaurants, one liquor store, a convenience/grocery store, and a gas station. Doesn’t sound too bad until you realise the gas station was closed at 1 pm on Saturday afternoon.

Of course, I may be biased because Plum Island still doesn’t have a stable (AKA municipal) water and sewer supply. And of course, I’m biased as a resident of the vibrant and busy Newburyport.