When I was a kid, we went to Cape Cod almost every summer with the extended family. Aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents all stayed in this giant house. The weeks we’d spend there consist of some of my very favorite memories – learning how to shuffle cards, watching James Bond movies, sharing a room with my sister and older cousin (trading off whose turn it was to sleep in a sleeping bag between the two beds), buying penny candy, hours and hours at the beach. We stopped going sometime in the 1990s. I think it just got too difficult to coordinate once many of us cousins were in middle school and high school. But I think we all missed it.
My parents started going back a few years ago, right around the time my college friend Pete’s parents bought a house on the Cape. My parents have been renting that house every summer since. It’s a bit strange to restart yearly vacations in this way, picking up where you left off 15 years before. Last year, my extended family rented a big big house over Memorial Day, and I have a feeling that will become a new yearly tradition, too.
Cape Cod is one of those places that time doesn’t seem to really touch. So many of the things I remember from my childhood visits are still there. Vacations on the Cape are repetitive in the best nostalgic ways – there are just so many things we need to do each time we’re there, even if we just did it last summer. A cup of clam chowder at the Squire in Chatham, a new sweatshirt from Cuffy’s, fresh fish from the fish pier for dinner… it’s comforting to be able to continue all of these traditions, and to share them with Dan, now.
Dan and I don’t go every year (and now that the extended family is going in the Spring, going twice each summer is even harder), and we hadn’t been with my parents in August in a few years, so we made it a point to go for a long weekend this year. I’m so, so glad that we did. We both sorely needed a weekend away from everything, knowing how much things are going to explode with the new semester starting at work and that whole Buying A House Or Some Shit thing.
My photos from Cape Cod are sort of unoriginal, in that I know I’ve taken many of them before, but can’t seem to resist taking them again. In our brief 3+ day visit, we visited Chatham, took a tour at Cape Cod Brewing (so interesting! And they only distribute on the Cape!), watched lots of Red Sox games (arguably my dad’s favorite part), bought new sweatshirts, read a lot, and saw the ocean (even getting partial credit for #11 on my 33 before 33 list). It was pretty great.