Saturday, July 28, 2018

Road Trip to New England

I've really been craving an authentic lobster roll and while I still have dreams of going to Maine, I convinced the family to drive through seven states up to Cape Cod, where I definitely ate my fair share of some of the best seafood evah.

We broke up our trip on the way there after four hours of driving with a stay in Connecticut. I didn't realize it was Henry's first hotel experience as we've always stayed with family or in vacation homes, so this newfound concept of hotel was pretty great to witness ("Where's the kitchen? How are we going to eat?"...and then immediately bouncing on all the beds, with any fears of missed meals long forgotten.)

The next day, we drove 3.5 more hours to Buzzards Bay in Cape Cod, where we met up with one of Scott's former colleagues, who happened to be staying at the family compound. This house was amazing...along with all of the others in the neighborhood. Private beach access, sweeping vistas, windows galore. It would be real easy to just retire to one of the 15 bedrooms and go unnoticed for a few weeks. The kids swam in the pool after enjoying the rocky beach below and then we made our way to our own cottage about 25 minutes away in Plymouth.

I found our cottage listed on a vacation rental site and just kept coming back to it. It really had it all for what we were looking for-an easy vacation with some experiences available should we want to partake. The cottage sits right on one of Massachusetts glacial lakes-Long Pond- so the water is crystal clear, with a sandy beach, jumping dock, barge, and its own canoe. The cottage itself had all the amenities one might need in an upgraded cabin for family convenience. We enjoyed our meals and morning coffee on the sun porch with a swing, and the kids and I loved the Dutch doors. I was sold.
We spent our days swimming, canoeing, and exploring historical Plymouth (where Jo fell and left a fair share of her DNA in the old streets).

One of Henry's vacation bucket list items was to see a lighthouse, and the Cape is full of them, but not all are on land or offer the availability to walk up to them, as a few are vacation rentals for those who want to shell out $6k a week. This one, the Nobska Lighthouse about a 40 minute drive in Woods Hole, was perfect. We unfortunately missed the interior tours by one day, but Henry didn't seem to mind. We could see Martha's Vineyard, watch the ships going in and out of the Harbor, and amazing views from the hill.
It was here that I ate the most expensive sandwich of my life, but wowza was it worth it. Both Scott and I failed on asking for it to be with butter instead of mayo but it didn't even matter. That warm and crispy buttered roll hugged that six ounces of lobster perfectly, and washed down with a local beer sitting on the restaurant dock complete with drawbridge going up and down made for a perfect lunch for everyone.
Swimming daily at the cottage was a given. The lake was about 30 steps from the door and everyone loved the easy accessibility. We floated, jumped, paddled, and canoed through that water for hours.

We were in a pretty remote area of Plymouth, tucked off dirt roads and surrounded by nature. We saw bald eagles, deer, and hiked to a cranberry bog. While not in season, we could see the fruit and imagine how it would be in a few months. It was really cool.

It's unlikely that Jo will remember this vacation, but I am confident Henry will. It really checked all of my own boxes for a fun family vacation with beach, camp-like surroundings, nature, adventure, and relaxation. The kids did better than I expected on the long drive, had the best time, and really was such a great way to recharge as a family. I'll be riding the post-vacation high for a while. And thinking about that lobster roll. And scallops.

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