After a thunderstorm walks a cool, dim silence

Dark ‘N Stormy®

by Sydney Bender

Dark ‘N Stormy®

Elizabeth Cecil

Winter in cottage City—this is the longest season. Halloween dreams and flannel sleeves. Familiar faces and low-pitched laughter fill the terra cotta sidewalks of Circuit Avenue with music no one could ever hear in the summertime.

There are still no streets with stop-lights. Nobody sends postcards. But just like in the spring, the rhythm of the ocean is offbeat poetry and anyone can fall asleep listening to the rain.

After a thunderstorm walks a dim silence. It’s echoed between the buildings amid the swishing sound of puffy jackets and winter work boot footsteps. Restaurants and bars that stay open give a sense of community to outsiders looking in.

“I’ll have a Dark ‘N Stormy®,” a gentleman orders at a neighborhood bar. He’s ordering ginger beer the color of thick honey, topped with Gosling’s Black Seal Rum® that hovers like a cloud over a hay-colored sea.

In the wintertime, it’s harder to forget the morning seashore smells and sounds of stories told more than twice. The Vineyard places, faces and skyline all seem unrobbably ours, without a doubt that crowds or traffic could ruin the day ahead.

The threat of thunder or rain or even sometimes snow, seem more like a promise. Comfort inevitably is present, knowing friends and a Dark ‘N Stormy® could be moments away. With such a seafaring name, this drink reminds us not just of the weather, but also of the surrounding sea, a winter landscape and seascape natives are all too familiar with.

For many, winter’s welcome comes slowly, having moved through seasons like a station wagon through mud. We welcome the change and when it’s time to warm up to winter and the sound raindrops give off sultry smiles and clean air smells, we know, this is what makes an island a home.