The sea. Under the sun I can almost make them out. I call out to the pod of them, all lined up, then they dive. When, moments ago, we wandered the beach to the chalet, we were silent. The seals honk at us, "You are on our shore!". We don't leave. I turn around, you follow.

Cape Breton is the piney fresh air that an air freshener is not. Sea soaked sandpipers skitter for clams. The crunch and brown of forgotten gravel roads take you to ancient gravestones. Stone structures proud, tall, Scottish. The Island is your cousin you don't often see but when you do the times are laughable because you both 'get it'. Windy. Witty and charming.

We wander aimlessly along the beach. Our feet our solid, our breath even. We listen absently. Heads bob in the sea as they squawk, the waves lapping carefully upon the Eastern shore. I can hear their cries, out in the bay, along the backs of their bodies. And those that are not there are coming. The tortoise, the sunfish, expanding as it moves, like a balloon, gliding under water along the sharp edge of the surface. You slow down, clear your throat, stand erect, turn around. Yes, you whisper aloud, they are part of who we are, they are here.