Last stop: Ocean City. I ended my road trip here in February 2011. It began as a cloudy morning that cleared up just after any hope of taking sunrise photos had passed. Sunshine didnít raise the temperature any: it was cold when I got here and it was still cold this morning. That, together with the eerie emptiness of the town and the fatigue of three weeks on the road, made for a short day here. After having spent the ten days in the southern half of the country, Maryland was cold. Cold and empty. An empty forest seems right, an empty town does not. One inspires calm, the other restlessness.
I woke up early to try to grab some sunrise photos from my balcony, but had no luck there. It was a cloudy morning just like the previous day. I was seven stories up and didnít exactly feel like going downstairs so I stayed in my room for a while. Now and then Iíd poke my head out, click the camera trigger.
Some time later I decided to take a walk. The boardwalk wasnít particularly inviting, its shops all closed and nobody in sight. The ghosts of tourists past and tourists yet to come were almost palpable. Even the oceanís surf was muted. I went on until I saw a construction crew fixing the boardwalk ahead of me. This gave me the excuse I needed to turn around. There was an interesting looking area ahead with a Ferris Wheel and some other attractions. If itíd been a week earlier and 10 degrees warmer I would have probably hopped the fence and walked along the beach to it, but the gates to the beach were all closed and under the current circumstances even this minor barricade was enough to deter me.
It seems an anti-climatic way to end this trip, but there you have it. There was nothing else to see nearby. Everything was closed. No trails. Just the long road beckoning me home. I bid the ocean farewell and then I was off.