We just returned from a pitch-perfect beach-weekend in Cape Cod. If your friends ever invite you to stay at their family’s cottage, I highly recommend that you jump at the opportunity.
Aron and I agreed that a trip to Cape Cod seems so quintessentially summer–although I’m not sure either of us could have told you why. After this weekend I think we have a better idea.
My friend’s mother has a cottage in Chatham–which sits on the elbow of the Cape, between the Nantucket Sound and Pleasant Bay. Aron and I left from work on Thursday evening, using a Zip Car to drive up and join her and her husband. New York had been mired in a sticky heat wave all week, and we drove past open fire hydrants, and the children playing in their rushing water. Another quintessentially-summer scene. The beach was going to feel nice.
We slipped in late at night, and said our first hellos the next morning. Teryn and Matt had set aside a favorite: the French muffin from a bakery in town, Chatham Cookware. We picked more up the next day. And the next. One day they were still hot from the oven: delicious!
Chatham has a charming main street (where one can find said muffins, on top of loads of other good stuff), but other than a later detour to pick up fudge from Candy Manor and a drive out to the fish pier, we spent our time at the beach or at the cottage.
The water in the Sound, at Hardings Beach, was amazingly warm. I had no idea how warm it would be, and Aron and I kept remarking in disbelief that we didn’t think this was possible this far north. Highlights from our time at the beach? Practicing our paddle-ball skills, playing with our friends’ twin boys, and catching up on our (unfortunately growing) pile of New Yorker back issues.
We shared some very tasty, very fresh seafood, mostly from Chatham Fish & Lobster. The oysters and whole lobsters were amazing–and we went back twice for their shrimp po’ boy sandwich, it was so good. Desserts came in the form of mini pies from Marion’s pie shop.
On the drive back to New York, we stopped at an old favorite, Abbott’s Lobster in the Rough (just outside of Mystic) for one more New England meal. The oysters dwarfed everything else on the plate–they may have been a bit too much oyster in one bite for me, but Aron loved them. To eat this well in such a stunning setting is quite a treat.
My only complaint: it went by too fast.
P.S. We returned to Cape Cod and explored more in the summer of 2011. Here’s a second Cape Cod Travelogue (with side trips outside of Chatham to Wellfleet and a ride on the Rail Trail).