Cape Cod marshes turn into extensions of the sea as Hurricane Sandy arrives

WEST YARMOUTH—Most days, the spot here known as Lewis Pond resembles a marsh more than a pond.

Not today.

Shortly before noon, it looked like an extension of the sea, roiled by Hurricane Sandy.

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“We’ve been here seven years,” resident Kevin Biernacki said. “This is the most amazing thing we’ve seen yet.

“Don’t get me wrong-- there's normally some water in that, but nothing like this at all. This is like the ocean.”

As the initial bands of rain and wind generated by the hurricane arrived on Cape Cod, life proceeded, albeit at a curtailed pace. And curiosity was at a premium, with scattered storm watchers gathered along the shore, jackets drawn tight.

At Bagels and Beyond, customers trickled in, a mix of emergency workers and people liberated from work for the day because of Sandy. Owner Julie Moran was there in the morning—but hoping to close a bit earlier than the normal closing hour of 2 p.m.

Rick Lemont stopped by for a bagel and orange juice. He’d cleaned his gutters and moved lawn furniture in anticipation of Sandy coming ashore.

“I work for the harbor master department in Dennis, so we’re on full alert,” said Lemont, who lives in West Barnstable.

Siblings Kris and Katelyn Reddy and friend Lori Bois swung by the bagel shop this morning.

“None of us had work today,” said Bois, who cleans houses. “Basically, we’re probably going to go home now and not leave.”

Richard Abramson and Daphne Yobbagy were selling pumpkins as part of a fund-raiser at the West Yarmouth Congregational Church, the proceeds divvied up between the church and a Native American tribe.

“We’re going to sit here, and if people want to buy them, we’ll work a deal at this point because of the storm,” Yobbagy said.

“We sold out a few years in a row. This storm is really killing us.”

Mona Solmonte, an administrative assistant with the Yarmouth parks and recreation department, was at her post at the Yarmouth Visitor Center, with offices split between the town and Chamber of Commerce. The town workers were there; chamber workers got the day off.

“We’re just trying to get the central things done,” she said. Residents had called and asked the town to secure empty trash barrels on the beach and to report other concerns.

“It will be very interesting as time goes on,” she said.