A Cape Cod Notebook

The Labor Day Conundrum

Sep 10, 2019
L. Lerner

In an off-Cape store last month, one of the clerks noticed the address on my account. “Oh, you live on the Cape,” she said. “You must be looking forward to Labor Day.”

Boats By Many Names

Sep 3, 2019
Nelson Sigelman

Four days a week I patrol Lake Tashmoo in a small skiff for the Tisbury shellfish department. Tashmoo is a lake in name only. A 270-acre coastal pond on the north shore of Martha’s Vineyard, it’s connected to Vineyard Sound by a deep, narrow channel. 

The Apex of Summer and the Freedom of September

Aug 27, 2019
Mary Bergman

It was one of those days where the sand scorches your feet, where even the ocean doesn’t feel crisp enough to refresh you. Summer was at its apex, the sun and the smell of salt and sunscreen enough to intoxicate you.

A Pathway Less Traveled

Aug 20, 2019
Scott Webb / unsplash

Who is not a fan of nature trails?  They provide an opportunity to connect with the natural world, to see, hear, smell and touch the glories of nature, and be surrounded by them.  Thoreau famously said, “In wildness is the preservation of mankind.” 


Aug 13, 2019
Toan Phan / unsplash

My grandchildren live on the other side of the country. They are here for two weeks in the summer and two weeks at the winter holidays, so I’m lucky that I’m the grandmother associated with an exotic locale and the freedom that comes with vacation. Who wouldn’t like a lifestyle that includes rolling off Mayflower Beach at 7 p.m., stopping at Captain Frosty’s for hot dogs and ice cream, and taking an outdoor shower as the moon rises?

Here and Now

Aug 6, 2019
Mary Bergman

There are days when you can’t see the horizon out here. Days when the fog is so dense, sea and sky are stitched together as one fabric, but you can’t find the seam. The ocean stretches on from here to Portugal, people like to say. The ocean is virtually endless.

The Aerial Choreography of the Peregrine Falcon

Jul 30, 2019
L. Lerner


It was late morning, walking the East End beach on a falling tide.  Sand damp beneath our feet, shells and seaweed strewn about.  It is mild and almost foggy; rain is on the way.  From the water there emanates a funky, fishy smell- schools of mackerel in the harbor, they say.  

A Very Cape Cod Moment

Jul 23, 2019
L. Lerner


On a recent beautiful morning, I chatted with a fisherman on the beach. He was wearing shorts and a T-shirt. I was wearing my underwear. 

Maybe This Is the Year

Jul 16, 2019
Mary Bergman

Spring is beginning to stretch its legs, the sun is calling to us to get outside and move around. There are moments now, when the sun comes out and decides to stay a while, when the wind is still, where it feels as bright and warm as mid-July.

The Call of Gulls

Jul 9, 2019
Patrick Hendry / unsplash

I was lying in bed, between dreams, wide awake.  It was late - or early - 3:35 AM.  The house was still (no, not even a mouse…), the woods were quiet - the cricket din excepted.  No street noise, nothing from Route 6.  I lie awake. 

Mysterious Gnomes on 6A

Jul 2, 2019
Craig McLachlan / unsplash

There are gnomes hiding on Route 6A.

And before you think I’m a little too far into the chardonnay, let me reassure you that I know they are not real.

Roadside Robin

Jun 25, 2019
Dakota Lynch / CC 3.0

It was only for an instant, a second, a microsecond- a flash. I was driving north on Rt. 28, leaving Woods Hole and headed back to Provincetown, hurtling down the highway at perhaps 45 miles per hour.

Take It or Leave It

Jun 18, 2019
Mary Bergman


The landfill is one of three hubs on which life on Nantucket rotates around--the post office and the grocery store the two others. Stay long enough at any of the three and you are sure to run into everyone you know, including maybe some you are trying to avoid. 

Fleeting Spring

Jun 11, 2019
L. Lerner


It is a truism that by the time we notice spring it is essentially over. 

A Special Place and a Favorite Fishing Spot

Jun 4, 2019
Susan Moeller


This is a story about memory and remembrance. And, because this is Cape Cod, fishing. 

In the 1970s, my in-laws owned a house on Bass River. One day, probably around 1975, when my husband and I were walking our dogs along the shore, I glanced up at the river bank and saw … a gravestone.