Childhood summers always seem magical to me in retrospect. Part of mine were usually spent on Cape Cod, specifically in a house my father helped build in Eastham. This house was pure heaven to me and encompassed all the things that I loved. The bike trail ran through the back yard and I would run up the hill with my bike and pedal off for an hour or two free and happy knowing I could find my way back home. Days were spent at the beach, picnic lunches, and then back home to an outdoor shower and seafood dinner. As a child I vowed to someday live on the Cape. And I came pretty close for a while, spending about five years of my life on the South Shore of Boston. My favorite time of year there was September. All the tourists and townies would return to their respective homes and the beach was all mine. Sunny days, pink sunsets turning the sand that salmon crayola color, and no line at the ice cream stand. I’m hoping to get out to the Cape this September to visit a good friend. And in the hopes of trying to manifest this glorious beach vacation I’ve been reading, The Outermost House by Henry Beston. A classic about a year spent on the beach on the Cape in the late 1920’s. Here Beston describes what I love about this eroding land.
A powerful tribe of Indians, the Nausets, once inhabited this earth between the seas. Outermost cliff and solitary dune, the plain of ocean and the far, bright rims of the world, meadow land and marsh and ancient moor: this is Eastham; this the outer Cape. Sun and moon rise here from the sea, the arched sky has an ocean vastness, the clouds are now of ocean, now of earth. Having known and loved this land for many years, it came that I found myself free to visit there, and so I built myself a house upon the beach.