Looks Can Be Deceiving – Martha’s Vineyard

Fun times at Sankaty Head Lighthouse

Fun times at Sankaty Head Lighthouse

For our second day on Nantucket, we decided to rent a scooter and get out of town a bit. It has been so incredibly and unusually hot for this region. Even the locals are amazed. 90+ degrees and high humidity makes even walking around town a sweaty hot adventure. We thought by getting closer to the beach, and quite frankly, moving faster on a scooter, would be fun. First, we had an amazing (although incredibly hot) breakfast at Black Eyed Susan’s.

The rental company gave us a good destination recommendation and away we went. This WAS a fun adventure, but the fastest this little (brand new) scooter could go was 35 mph DOWNHILL! Unfortunately, for much of the drive, we were in a 45 mph two-lane road. This made Carl very nervous since we had cars backing up behind us and passing us regularly. They weren’t going particularly fast or close, so I felt fine, but I wasn’t driving.

We ended up going to Sconset beach and then on to Sankaty Head Lighthouse. It was a nice diversion from the tourist-packed town and the immense heat. After we got back to Nantucket, we had a late lunch and then over to the Juice Bar for homemade ice cream (a recommendation from our server). It was delicious, but melting fast. Carl enjoyed the coffee ice cream wherein I had the low-fat (seriously?) toffee coffee crunch. As most of you know, I’m not much of a dessert eater, it was so hot that ice cream sounded divine.

We ended the evening with dinner at The Dune and then our final day on Nantucket was Thursday with a ferry to Martha’s Vineyard late afternoon. We spent our last day leisurely walking around the shops of Nantucket and decided on one last meal at The Brotherhood of Thieves. Their burgers are fantastically delicious. We shared the Arkansas burger that included Cabot cheddar, crispy bacon (oh, how I love my bacon) herbed aioli and fried pickles (ok, I skipped those).

View of Center St from our room at the Jared Coffin House Inn

View of Center Street from our room at the Jared Coffin House

My thoughts about Nantucket: it is pretty, clean, peppy and enjoyable. It is easy to get around especially if you are centrally located as we were. There also seems to be a certain, shall we say, look, to a large majority of visitors/inhabitants to the island. It is the Bermuda shorts, polo shirts flip flop (or deck shoe) look. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this look, nothing at all. It’s just very homogenous and is everywhere. Lastly, this seems more like a perfect place to rent a house on the beach for a week or more, especially if you have kids. You could then really enjoy the more remote quiet part of the experience and only go to town a couple of times. Otherwise, there just isn’t that much to do (although we were going to go on a sunset cruise that was cancelled by a storm that never materialized). I did enjoy myself, but not sure I would return, or maybe not until we have a handful of grand-babies we can take to the ocean.

Totally relaxed on the ferry ride to Martha’s Vineyard

Totally relaxed on the ferry ride to Martha’s Vineyard

Uneventful ferry ride to Martha’s Vineyard where we rented a car for a day (cool new little fiat convertible). We checked into the Victorian Inn, another B&B, in Edgartown, and then set out for sunset pictures at Menemsha beach. It was a lovely drive, but the closer we got to the beach, the busier and busier it was. Tons of cars and people walking everywhere. They were lots of beach chairs, blankets, coolers… you name it, they had it. This is clearly an event. People are on their boats with their hibachis and BBQ’s fired up and drinks flowing. I seriously considered crashing a couple of these parties while Carl was off taking photos.

Tooling around The Vineyard in this new FIAT 500C Convertible

Tooling around The Vineyard in this new FIAT 500C Convertible

He did find a couple of great locations and, as usual, took some amazing photographs. I’m constantly in awe of him. Sunset was at 8:10 and we made a late dinner reservation at Lattanzi’s for 9:00. The thing on the islands is that restaurants stay open only as long as they want to. It was not unusual to see dinner hours listed at “5:00 p.m. to closing.” Closing. Closing is whenever they want it to be. So, they said 9:00 should be ok, but we certainly didn’t want to get there much later. Thank you Carl (and the cloud angels) for allowing us to wrap-up picture taking in time for a most delicious dinner of porterhouse veal chop and pasta bolognese! Magnifico!

Harbor sunset at Menemsha Bight, Martha's Vineyard

Harbor sunset at Menemsha Bight, Martha’s Vineyard

So, after a nice relaxing meal, sleep came easily to us. It had still been warm (although not nearly as hot as the last few days) so we had the air conditioner running at night. Now for a little back story. We had purchased a bottle of vodka in Cape Cod to have some in-room cocktails (think Bloody Mary’s and Vodka Tonics). When we left Nantucket, I didn’t want to pack the heavy glass bottle to Martha’s Vineyard and instead poured it into a water bottle. I showed it to Carl and told him what I had done. I also scrunched up the label and made sure it didn’t look like any of our other bottles of water.

Fast forward to about 6:00 a.m. this morning when Carl got up to turn off the air conditioning. He walks over to the dresser where the vodka/water bottle is sitting next to a bottle of wine (I had also purposefully put a bottle of water on his nightstand within easy reach)–you can see where this is going–but what does he do? He grabs the vodka and takes a huge gulping drink and then I hear this gasping, retching sound (I am still laughing so hard I can barely type this). Carl blurts out “Vodka!” I literally had to choke down my roiling laughter because I knew he would not be happy if I was laughing at him. At the same time I had this very vivid image of a scene from the 1978 flick, “Up in Smoke” with Cheech and Chong when they are in front of the woman judge and, with blazing cotton-mouth, Cheech grabs her water and takes a huge drink only to scream “f’ing Vodka!” Carl never saw that movie. Oh my. All I can say is that shot of vodka put him right back to sleep.

So, for the record, not all B&B’s serve a “no-choice” breakfast. The Victorian Inn offered an option of peach-stuffed French toast (what is it with stuffed french toast?) or scrambled eggs with smoked salmon and chives on toast. Now that’s my kind of savory breakfast.

We headed out to Aquinnah to see the beach and the lighthouse and then on to Vineyard Haven for some additional focal points. Unfortunately, the traffic was so bad and since there was virtually no parking, we weren’t even able to stop as we had to get the rental car back to Oak Bluffs. This place is packed. People wall-to-wall. Made me feel like I was traveling for business and in crowded airports all the time. And loud. Very loud. The year round population. Is around 16,000 and swells to 100,000 in peak season, which is now.

Located on the less-populated western end of Martha's Vineyard, the Aquinnah Cliffs are a sacred spot of the Wampanoag [Native American] people

Located on the less-populated western end of Martha’s Vineyard, the Aquinnah Cliffs are a sacred spot of the Wampanoag [Native American] people

I am glad we chose these locations as I love visiting new places and experiencing new cultures. I was also thrilled to be able to truly relax and recharge. I can honestly say I am ready to get back at it next week. I can also say I’m not sure I would put these locations on my list any time soon, unless it was after Labor Day…

Boston and homeward bound tomorrow.

Proud old gals... (Harbor at Menemsha Bight, Martha's Vineyard)

Proud ol’ gals… (Harbor at Menemsha Bight, Martha’s Vineyard)

Harbor sunset at Menemsha Bight, Martha's Vineyard

Harbor sunset at Menemsha Bight, Martha’s Vineyard

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4 Comments

  1. Posted July 21, 2012 at 8:42 am | Permalink | Reply

    Enjoyed reliving your pleasant Nantucket, New England experience in words and pictures. Joy and agape’…Joe

  2. Beverly Chase
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 9:05 pm | Permalink | Reply

    So glad you had a wonderful time. So enjoyed the pictures and descriptions of all the places you saw and the food. I am just now having time to look at everything and enjoy it. Mom

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