Extremely short holiday recap

Originally posted over at LJ.
Cape Cod was awesome and relaxing and I loved all of it except the drive (more on that in a bit). The house is a little bungalow near the Sea Street beach, on a cul de sac.  Less than a hundred yards to the 30 steps down to the beach, which is on the Nantucket Sound.  If I left the sliding doors open, I could hear the crash of the waves on the beach as I fell asleep.  And the beach was never too crowded, even though it was right next to the public lot with beach parking.  The water was still and calm on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, but higher and much windier on Wednesday and Thursday.  There’s an osprey that nests nearby and I got to watch it dive for fish and pluck up a crab.  And the little birds that pick at whatever lives in the sand at the edge of the water, they were hilarious.   Two of them “owned” that little stretch of beach, and they patrolled vigorously, puffing up and running intruders off their territory.
Early morning view looking east toward South Monomoy Island, a long, narrow barrier island hanging off the eastern elbow of the cape that hosts the Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge.
On Tuesday, while sitting on the beach and chatting with my neighbors, I felt my chair shift.  It was a little odd, because I hadn’t moved or adjusted the chair, but I chalked it up to shifting sand.  A while later I went to the house for a drink and the phone happened to ring while I was there — there’d been an earthquake in VA/DC/MD and my mom was calling to make sure I was safe (she’d forgotten I was on vacation).  In retrospect, I wonder if it was shifting sand or aftershocks of the earthquake, which were felt all the way to Boston and as far west as Cleveland.  Checked with my neighbor — no major damage, nothing leaking, no gas smells, don’t come home early for this.  So I didn’t.  When I got home, I found a few books on the floor — they weren’t wedged into the shelves tightly enough, I suppose, maybe I should buy more? 😉
I used sunblock assiduously but still managed to get a few odd streaks of sunburn — across the tops of my thighs, and that little tender spot where my arm meets my torso — the outer part of the armpit, I guess.  And oddly, despite remembering to put sunscreen on them, my feet are the brownest part of my body, an odd reverse of the usual sock-tan-lines 😛
Ate a lot of fresh seafood, yum.  I feel like I’m about to confess to something terrible: as much as I love seafood, I don’t really *love* lobster.  I mean, I ate a lobster roll and it was good (although why are the rolls always stale?), but the clams and scallops were more to my taste.  And the fish and chips.  And the clam chowder.  And Cape Cod Creamery’s ice cream?  Delicious, especially their Dennis Double Chocolate, which is a dark chocolate ice cream with small chunks of dark chocolate and cinnamon.  Marion’s Pies in Chatham does great savory and sweet pies, and the orange citrus rolls were out of this world.  Think cinnamon roll in texture and size, but lose the cinnamon and add a lemon and orange flavored sugar glaze with bits of zest mixed in.
Lounging at the sea wall at the top of the stairs down to the beach.
Remembered (at last) to take the 1,000 piece puzzle along, but didn’t get very far since puzzling required too much time indoors and too much concentration.  Did very little reading, at least compared to what I expected to accomplish.  Visited The Book Rack, a used book store in South Yarmouth with a huge collection of historical romance books.  Picked up several Harlequin Romances from the 60s that I plan on reading and posting about over at WordPress.  I’ll post a book report over there in the next day or so, too.
Ended up coming back a day early because I didn’t want to be driving down the east coast as Irene was hitting MD, NJ, NY.  Which has turned out to be a good thing.  Traffic was pretty easy yesterday (except through NYC), since no one had evacuated yet.  C ended up not coming, which was not a huge surprise, given the weather and other things.

As relaxing as the trip was, I’m not sure I’ll go back any time soon for a couple of reasons.  First, the drive.  It was 8.5 – 9 hours with no major delays or backups, and frankly the Outer Banks is a closer and easier drive (plus fewer tolls, which I think totalled about $45, must check my EZPass).  The Cross Bronx Expressway is miserable — yesterday we crept along going 10mph or less from the entrance to the GW Bridge.  No lane closures, no road work, just volume and drivers who couldn’t figure out which lane they needed to be in.  And it was just as bad on Saturday, plus the bipolar driving through Connecticut.  I’ve mapped out other routes, but they all add 2 or more hours to the trip, which is already long to begin with.  Second, although the bungalow’s location was excellent, it needs some cosmetic work — nothing that couldn’t be fixed with elbow grease and $1,000 or less, but there are a lot of other rentals out there in the same price range that are better.  Still, the rental agency was very good and Essential Rentals (bike, linens, grocery delivery) was excellent.

Not sure what’s up with the wonky formatting — WordPress is ignoring my paragraph breaks and returns. Had the same problem with LJ.

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2 Comments

Filed under travel

2 responses to “Extremely short holiday recap

  1. Love the pics. Two months ago I traveled to South Padre Island. Had a blast even though it was hot as hell. Looking at your pictures I am ready for another trip somewhere with a view like that. I will confess: I’m not a big fan of crustaceans. I went to the Virgin Islands with a college friend several years ago and stayed a month. My hosts provided me with KFC or something else while I lived there with them. It’s funny thinking back on it now. It was entirely the wrong place to stay if you don’t care for seafood.

    • Thanks re the pics. I took them on my phone, which has become my default camera since I never remember to carry a real one anywhere.

      There are a fair number of things to eat besides seafood — pizza places abound on Cape Cod for some reason, maybe because it’s easy to make and a kid-pleaser, and there were a lot of Italian restaurants and hearty-fare type places. But, no, maybe not the ideal vacation spot for you in terms of eating.

      I’ve heard good things about South Padre Island. In fact, I think last Christmas, my sister stayed there for a holiday vacation with her husband’s family. It was probably a little bit cooler then though 😀

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