Rhode Island’s Ocean and Coastal Magazine
In this issue, we explore the trials and tribulations Rhode Islanders have faced during this pandemic.
Letter From the Editor
The children’s book Zen Shorts includes an old taoist story about a farmer whose horse runs away. His neighbors tell him this is bad luck, but the farmer answers, “Maybe.” Then the horse returns with two other wild horses. The neighbors exclaim that this is such good luck. “Maybe,” the farmer again replies. His son attempts to ride one of the new horses, is thrown off, and breaks his leg. Bad luck. Maybe. And so on. This tale came to my mind when reflecting on this issue of 41°N.
The pandemic has had tragic consequences for people and communities, of course, but it has also managed to get people active outside more, as we see in Meredith Haas’s article, and has even brought families closer together as we see in Elaine Lembo’s article. Both writers found that some businesses had a summer COVID boom as people sought boat and kayak rentals and shopped for outdoor gear. But the crush of people flocking to limited recreation areas and activities has led to everything from littering to parking violations to angry confrontations. Unintended consequences is also a theme running through The Outlaw Ocean, the book we reviewed for this issue, where pressure asserted in one area—using armed guards aboard shipping vessels to curtail piracy, for instance—leads to more pressure in another area—like increased prices for goods transported by sea.
How we deal with adversity is fluid—as Haas reports, people’s reactions in early spring were very different than late summer—and with the pandemic, as with other challenges that you will read about in this issue, we still have a chance to change the ending of the story. Hopefully for the better.
—Monica Allard Cox, Editor
– Features –
Through trials and tribulations, Jody King’s passion for quahogs and people gets him through.
If the sea has saved people so many times, perhaps we should be doing a better job of saving it.
COVID-19 effects on mental health and Rhode Island’s coast.
A conversation with local podcaster, Zach Rollins.
Pandemic drives recreation and vacations out to sea.
Roadwork planning can be complicated and preparing roads to withstand flooding and erosion takes the complexity to a new level.
Rhode Island’s living shoreline project could reduce urban erosion.
Journeys across the last untamed ocean by Ian Urbina.
Fishermen and oyster growers explore new markets as COVID transforms seafood industry.
Enjoying the best of local, Rhode Island seafood.
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