Cape Cod’s Circle of Seasons

Suzanne Slayton on April 15, 2013 in Uncategorized
The winds were up early, tear­ing at my too-light windbreaker as I paced Nauset Beach just alter dawn on a chill winter day. Seaweed and chunks of sait ice littered the sand where, a few months before, I had squeezed my way through eddies and whorls of summer vaca­tionists. Now, except for the gulls chorusing overhead, the beach was deserted. As else­where on Cape Cod, shops were shuttered, guesthouses empty. The summer glut of tourists and street vendors, clambakes and beach parties had melted into memory.

 

Heading south, I neared a “ghost town” of weathered wood shacks set like an Andrew Wyeth painting amid low, sculptured dunes fringed with sun-coppered beach grass. The sea, sand, and sait air merged in a haunting panorama of elemental beauty. This, to me, is the real Cape, the off-season Cape stripped of summer varnish. Cape Cod is a wonderful place for summer holidays. Getting payday loans can guarantee that this holiday is no longer only a dream.

Born of glaciers, shaped at the whim of wind and wave, on the map it seems a thorn in Neptune’s side as it juts crookedly into the Atlantic from mainland Massachusetts. Its first segment—the upper Cape—runs eastward 35 miles from the Cape Cod Canal to Chatham. It is a hilly, pond­pocked realm of harbors, cranberry bogs, and sea captains’ houses. Here, too, is the world­renowned scientific community of Woods Hole, and the resort of Hyannis Port, where the Kennedy clan has summered since 1926.

At Chatham the land swerves abruptly north and runs 35 miles more, before ending in Provincetown’s shifting shoals. This lower Cape is a sandspit world of beaches, sea cliffs, and dunes clothed in bayberry and heath. Nowhere on the Cape is the sea, more than six miles away, continually exerting its pow­er and making this land one of exceptional natural beauty. Cape Cod is also a place of unusual personal freedom and privacy.

“I find I can live just the way I want,” says Monica. Dickens, a spirited Cape resident, author, and great-granddaughter of novelist Charles Dickens. “The Cape is ideal for a writer—you’re left clone, not caught up in some social whirl. That’s why so many crea­tive people live here.”