Thursday, March 11, 2010

What Happens in Cape Cod Stays in Cape Cod…or…Maybe Not

So yesterday I mentioned my birthday-slash-honeymoon, but I didn’t go into detail. Shocking, I know, given my tendency to write entries that verge on the edge of being called “chapters.”

As I said, four days after Vince and I got married last September, I turned the big 5-0 while we were on our pseudo-honeymoon. I’m not calling it our real honeymoon because, after all, we were in Cape Cod. At my parents’ cottage. With my parents. I mean, who goes on a honeymoon with their mom and dad? See, we’d intended to delay our honeymoon, but my parents thought we could use a few days to relax after all the excitement of the wedding and invited us to drive back with them.

Now, don’t get me wrong; it was a nice trip and we enjoyed ourselves and all, but perhaps not in the way honeymooners are supposed to. (Uh…I’m thinkin’ I’d better move on before I get into trouble.)

My parents understood our wish to have some alone time, so they suggested we take the car and drive down the coast toward Provincetown, spend the night somewhere and then return the following day. (I don’t understand how folks on Cape Cod talk…if you look at a map, it looks like you have to drive sideways and then up. They call that “driving down the Cape.” But I digress.)

Anyway, we thought that was a marvelous idea and decided that my birthday would be a good day to have our little adventure. We planned to well, not plan anything. In other words, we were just going to stop wherever and whenever the mood struck us. If we saw a town that looked interesting, we figured we’d check it out.

So we tossed an overnight bag in the car, planted our sunglasses firmly on our faces and headed out. And we had a wonderful time – eating at an English pub for lunch, stopping in quaint shops along the way, visiting a museum near the National Seashore and meandering around one of the many lighthouses in the area.

We arrived in Provincetown, or P-town as it’s called, near dinnertime. Vince, major-lover-of-seafood that he is, was in his glory. I mean, if there’s any place you can find all the seafood you want, it’s at the tip of Cape Cod. We went to dinner at a restaurant that featured a humongous heaping helping of all things seafood. (Don’t ask me what I ordered – probably chicken. Not a big fan of fish. My New England parents always wondered if they should throw me back.)

After dinner, we tried to walk off all that seafood (and chicken) as we checked out the shops along Commercial Street, but we sort of messed up our exercise plan when we ended up at a place called “The Purple Feather.” We had to stop, though. I mean, first of all, the name of the place immediately drew our attention. And gracing the doorway was a huge stuffed animal gorilla wearing a purple hat and matching feather boa. How could we not stop?!

Let me tell you, the gelato served at the Purple Feather is pretty spectacular, but it also costs a pretty penny! I handed Vince a $10, but it wasn’t enough to cover the check. I’m not even sure if the additional $5 I hauled out of my wallet was enough. But it was my birthday, and we’d had a great day, so we chalked it up to experience. (Yes, it’s always a good idea to read the menu, paying particular attention to the prices.) Nevertheless, we thought it was well worth it and we definitely enjoyed our gelato!

As it was beginning to get dark, we decided it was high time we found a place to stay for the night. Being spontaneous is one thing, sleeping overnight in the car is quite another.

Not being the shy type, Vince struck up a conversation with Peter, the owner of The Purple Feather, and asked him for recommendations on hotels in the area where we might stay. Peter graciously called some of his friends in town who owned or managed inns, and gave us a list of three possibilities.

Vince asked him where he’d stay if he were making the decision and Peter responded, “If it were me, and I was on my honeymoon, and my wife was celebrating her birthday…I’d stay at the Land’s End Inn.” So, even though it was the most expensive of the three, we heeded his great advice.

The manager of Lands End Inn gave us a break on the room rate, and he also brought us a complimentary bottle of wine and some cheese and crackers for our birthday-slash-honeymoon celebration.

It was dark by the time we got there, but when we awoke the next morning, it was to a spectacular sight. We were high up on a bluff that overlooked the ocean on three sides. We took lots of pictures both inside and out, enjoyed a breakfast buffet with the other guests and listened to their stories before reluctantly saying our goodbyes.

So it was a perfect day – and a great way to celebrate a birthday-slash-honeymoon!

PS, If you want to check out either Land's End Inn or The Purple Feather on Facebook, here are the links:
The Purple Feather:
Land's End Inn:!/pages/Provincetown-MA/Lands-End-Inn/61625386473

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