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Where They Went

Where they went: New England and New York

From left: Betsy Daly, Ned Daly, and Cindy Hendrickson at Salisbury Beach, the third of their six beaches in one day.

From left: Betsy Daly, Ned Daly, and Cindy Hendrickson at Salisbury Beach, the third of their six beaches in one day.
February 27, 2011

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WHO: Ned Daly, 59, of Needham; his sister, Betsy Daly, 61, of Cambridge, and friend Cindy Hendrickson, 56, of Gloucester

WHERE: New England, New York

WHEN: Aug. 23, 2010

WHY: To swim in six states in one day, an idea that occurred to Ned Daly while he was trying to sleep. “I was counting states instead of sheep.’’

MISSION INTERRUPTED: The trio, plus another sister, set out on an identical trip in August of 2009. “The weather was beautiful. We’d done five and were on our way to the sixth when we got rear-ended. The car was wrecked and we had to get it towed away.’’

TRY, TRY AGAIN: This year, only three people could make it. “Instead of a warm, sunny day, this one was rotten, with windy rain and temperatures in the 60s.’’ They convened around 4 a.m. on a Monday and headed to Short Sands Beach in York, Maine. “It was very windy. I set my eyeglasses on the beach and they blew away. I had a spare pair in the trunk of my car.’’ The rule was “head to toe immersion.’’

ZIPPING DOWN THE COAST: “We took a quick dip at Hampton Beach and drove along the coast to Salisbury Beach, the northernmost town on the ocean in Massachusetts. Finally we saw a few people and had someone to take a photo of us. Betsy had brought sandwiches and we stopped for coffee. It was about 8:30.’’

WE’LL BE RIGHT BACK: “We took the ferry from New London to Orient Point in New York, which runs every hour or so. It was kind of a rough passage because the wind and waves were picking up.’’ They submerged themselves near the dock. “You’d have to loosely construe the word beach, but it is the ocean and there are round stones and driftwood and seaweed. We managed to do this quickly enough that we got back aboard the same ferry and changed in the restroom there.’’

FOUR DOWN, TWO TO GO: Midafternoon they hit Ocean Beach Park in New London. “At that point, the weather was a little bit better, so there were people walking their dogs, guys with metal detectors. But there was no one in the water and they weren’t even collecting money for parking.’’

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED: The trio made it to the final stop, Misquamicut Beach in Rhode Island, without incident, but didn’t like what they saw. “A sign said surf is up and riptides are dangerous. It gave us pause, and if it hadn’t been six out six, we never would have gone in. We walked in very carefully and held on to each other. We walked out yelling and screaming.’’

DIANE DANIEL

Send suggestions to diane@bydianedaniel.com within a month of your return.