Spent most of this week at the Outer Banks. Those who live there call themselves (some of them anyway), Outer Bankers. (There are some who think it is all right to be bankers.) We rented a house in Nags Head found via VRBO. The house was between Highway 158 and 12 and fortunately, since it was early in the season, it was still relatively quiet. The only real disturbance in the morning was the construction nearby on Jeanette's Pier.
I found it remarkable that despite being less than half a mile on the ocean on one side and the sound on the other, it was very easy to forget that we were by the sea. Nags Head and most of the strip from Kitty Hawk is laid out in a grid with commercial strip malls on either side on 158. On Highway 12, there are houses, restaurants and motels/hotels on either side, making it convenient since we were close by to several restaurants (within 5 minutes walk) as well as a convenience store and a 7-11.
All the homes have balconies, some more than one - like outstretched arms embracing the sea, as if saying, "Take me home." It will not be surprising to me to read that life on earth began from the sea.
I also found it contradictory that when on vacation I like isolation and yet be close to all the trappings of suburbia at the same time. It would have been nice if it were possible but the scale of development of the Outer Banks precludes that. We drove as far north as Corolla, where houses like this were the norm. The northern part of the Outer Banks from Kitty Hawk feels more affluent as evidenced by the size of the homes and the lack of public beach access. Our last night was spent at the Hilton Garden Inn in Kitty Hawk - oceanfront - we could hear the waves from the room. The bed was too soft for me and the space was a letdown after a house but it was otherwise a comfortable stay.
The weather was cool but for the most part good and the food at FatBoyz, Owens and Outer Banks Brewing were delicious. I'm not planning on going back - it was one of the places on my list that I can now cross off. It's too bad we did not have the inclination to drive down to Cape Hatteras.