I came across a little book at a flea market published in 1936 called “And This Is Cape Cod!” On the first page of chapter one, it reads: “If you love the sea, nice little houses, all kinds of flowers, moors like music, long roads stretching through the wind, fat blueberry pies and lobsters, you will love the Cape.”
I recently noticed the crocuses emerging in my newly thawed garden, a sure sign spring is just around the corner and that means it will soon be time to make the long-awaited trip back to the place we love and dream about all winter, Cape Cod.
As I get ready to pack my family and dogs into our car to open our house, I still feel the same excitement and anticipation I did as a kid, when our whole family would pile into our 1968 Vista Cruiser making our first trip back to our beloved summer house. After four long hours in the car, which seemed neverending, my father would roll down all the windows and yell, “Smell that salt air, here we are kids,” and like the Great Oz appearing out of the fog was the Bourne Bridge. Our gateway to summer fun!
As we would drive slowly into Falmouth (this was the late 1960s) we would pass the Elizabeth Theater, Trahan’s Candy, J.J. Newberry’s (all of us kids loved the soda fountain), Isaacson’s, Malchman’s (my mom never missed the August “Below Deck” sale) and Falmouth’s first hippie store, Yellow Orange.
We would turn onto Shore Street and get our first glimpse of Surf Drive Beach and Vineyard Sound. We would hear the foghorn at Nobska welcoming us back, our constant summer friend.
And then, there was our house—vacant all winter long, it would soon become the hub of our activity. As a child I always felt the lonely house was so happy to see us pull up, and get it all cleaned up for another summer on the Cape.
History repeats itself. It is generational for so many of us “summer people.” The years go by but the traditions live on. As I make this trip now with my own family, the same anticipation is felt. We pull into town and travel down Main Street. The storefronts have changed, but the beauty of Falmouth has not.
My daughter yells with excitement, “The beach, Mom, the beach!” It’s still the same!
And so it begins, another summer. The screen door opens and slams; welcome to “The Tales of A Summer House.”