Gone Fishin'

HEY!

I'm not actively blogging here anymore. But if you got here because you were searching for something about bikes, you might want to check out my latest project, Vermont Goldsprints. In summer of 2014, I bought a used goldsprints racing setup and have made it a mission to get more bikes in more people's faces by putting on fun races in unexpected places. Come join me!

11.05.2005

Cape Cod Part I: Arrival

I first came to Cape Cod in the early fall of 1999. I had just graduated from college that spring and had worked the summer for a landscaper despite my father's post-graduation advice that "the concrete factory is hiring." They were hiring, and I made it all the way into the lobby before turning around and finding the first landscaper in the want ads who was looking for help. After a summer of digging holes, however, fall was fast approaching and living at home was wearing thin. I applied to an AmeriCorps program on the Cape because it sounded like a good environmentalist thing to do and because the Cape sounded nice. I had never been there. To me, Cape Cod was the nice place my parents went to every spring while my sister and I stayed with my dad's parents in New Hampshire and reveled in the guilty pleasures of cable TV and fried food at various restaurants up and down the New Hampshire and Maine coasts, which my grandfather liked because "you get a lot." I was pretty sure I would get to the Cape, buy myself an old cruiser bike, straw hat, and a pair of flip flops and go native. I was wrong. In the ten years prior to my arrival, the population of the Cape had increased by 40%. In the years since, property values have doubled. Such a climate is fairly hostile to those who wish to live a floppy-hatted flip-flopped existence, unless you would like to do so in the back yard of a McMansion, living/kitchen/dining/bed room of a cut rate studio apartment in Hyannis, or the same room in an unheated cottage in January. My recollections of arriving on the Cape are foggy. I had never driven through Boston before, so I was a little bit shell-shocked for the rest of the trip. I'd never been on a road like Route 3, where the speed limit was 55 but everybody went 70 and up. Route 6 was more of the same, but narrower. We left the highway at Exit 7 and took Willow Street south to Camp Street. At the intersection of Camp Street and Route 28, I made my first and last left turn at that location. Route 28 was madness. People yelled. People cut in from side roads when there was no room to do so. There was no water, no sand dune or even seagull in sight. The hotels along the road were garish, with tall picture windows showing off forlorn painted concrete pool areas within. The tourist trap souvenir shops were carpeted in sun-faded infatable toys from the asphalt to the eaves. We passed several package stores as well, windows papered with prices for cut- rate booze. We arrived at our hotel to find that the sheets had not been changed in our room, and promptly lerft for another hotel down the street. I relaxed for the evening in the obligatory concrete pool area. my summer tan already fading to pallor under the greenish fourescent lights. Tomorrow I would travel back west from the middle of the Cape to Bourne.