There are people and places we encounter that make an impact on our life. They become a statement to something bigger and better. Dauphin Island is our special place, our retreat from chaos. We look forward to our getaways and Steve starts dreaming of bakery good weeks before we arrive on the Island.
The Island has a bakery that rivals that of any world class establishment. It’s strange given that Dauphin Island is a tiny place with virtually no commercialization. It is truly the best food on the Island. If you Google Lighthouse Bakery you will see the following description, “Cozy mom-&-pop locale in a historic house offering baked goods, coffee, breakfast & sandwiches.” That is so accurate. Ms. Mary had talent. You walk into the bakery and immediately realize that when you crossed the bridge to the Island, you entered Island time and if you want an incredible cinnamon bun or cheese danish, you’re going to wait patiently while the next batch cooks because if it isn’t before 7:30 AM you missed out. Even 7:30 may be too late. The bakery opens at 6:00 and Ms. Mary and her crew arrive hours before. They have omelets made to order, pigs in a blanket, and other yummy offerings, but it is the baked goods that are truly incredible. We figured out how to avoid getting up at the crack of dawn while on vacation, and avoid the long line of other late morning arrivals. Once we arrive on the Island, we place our order for the week and pick it up each day. It is an awesome service the bakery offers. I’ve never tried doing the same for lunch, but it might be worth it on the days I want a chicken salad croissant to enjoy after paddling the bay, walking the bird sanctuary, or sitting on the beach watching the waves roll in.
For the last seven months the bakery has been managed by Mary’s daughter Christa. A realtor in the area, Christa is not lacking in bakery experience. She has had big shoes to fill, but by all accounts she is making momma proud. Ms. Mary suffered a stroke a few years ago, and then another in December. It was with the second stroke that an inoperable brain tumor was discovered. Ms. Mary has spent the last few months in Hospice care. She lost her battle with cancer in the early hours of the morning, July 25th.
We are visiting our little Island this week. The bakery is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. I don’t know if they will open while we are here. It is sad either way. Christa is capable and talented as well, but loss is never easy. The bakery family, the Island, has suffered a loss and Ms. Mary will be missed.
Rest in peace sweet Bakery Lady. Your fight is over. Your memory remains strong.
Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul there is no such thing as separation.– Rumi
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