Monday (7/5) – Onset, MA
It was time to move on from Fairhaven, and we had a good weather day to do just that. We would have loved to stay longer as these people were so great to us, but Maine is our goal and it was time to say good bye. As we readied the boat to leave and eventually pull away, Pat, Anthony, Brian and Penny were there for hugs, handshakes and the wave goodbye. The people on “C” dock were also out and about and gave us a warm send off as well.
We exited the New Bedford Harbor and headed out past the hurricane wall to a nice day on Buzzards Bay. Our destination was the Village of Onset, near Cape Cod. Onset is on the mainland side and is the last harbor area before entering the Cape Cod Canal and transiting to the Cape Cod Bay. The purpose of stopping here was to connect with Douglas, one of Mark’s long-time friends from Miami and groomsman in our wedding. His still-living parents have a summer home in Onset and many of the family members were going to be there. When we found out he would be there as well, we knew we had to coordinate a stopover to see everyone.
The travel time to Onset was only 90 minutes and with it being a holiday, there were quite a few boats on the water. We easily entered the channel for the Onset Harbor and made our way to Point Independent Yacht Club (PIYC) where we had a reservation. We secured the boat, checked in with the dockmaster and attempted to make contact with Douglas. We were a day earlier than expected so we were not surprised that it wasn’t until later that day that we actually connected; he had spent the day on the beach that surrounds this pretty harbor.
During the afternoon, the winds really picked up and the boat, which was side-tied on the outer dock was really rocking. Just to get off the boat, we walked the docks of the yacht club, meeting several of the members who were incredibly inviting and friendly to us. We talked with them for a while and they gave us suggestions of places to go and things to see. On their suggestion, we walked into the Village of Onset and went to Glen Cove Inn & Restaurant for dinner. To get there we had to cross a small bridge over the East River that leads to Broad Cove. Then in the next block stood this beautiful inn and restaurant, where we had a terrific meal. We returned back to PIYC and ended the day with a terrific sunset.
Tuesday, (7/6) – Onset, MA
In the morning we were able to make contact with Douglas and he invited us to come over to the house. So we walked the few blocks from the yacht club to where it was located, just one lot from the Onset Beach. We visited with the family members there, including his mom & dad, cousin, two sons, nephews, etc. We also had a chance to meet Sissy, who has been with Douglas for the last 10 years, but whom we had never met. We sat around talking for a long while, getting caught up on each other’s lives and hearing about what is going on in Miami Shores, where the parents still live. It had been years since we had been able to see each other, despite several attempts when we were in the Miami area.
Sissy and Douglas wanted to see our boat, so we walked back to PIYC to give them the grand tour and snap a few pictures.
Sissy had afternoon plans with her son, daughter-in-law and grandchild, who were also visiting, but Douglas wanted to go to lunch with us. So the three of us walked into the Village of Onset for a late lunch at a place called Quahog Republic. Along the way Douglas would share stories of his adventures as a kid coming to this place, and how much fun it is to see his own sons (4 of them) participate in the same adventures. We had a great time laughing and talking, and the food was good too. But the company and a nice cold beer was the perfect recipe for a perfect day
After lunch we went back to the house for more visiting and meeting Sissy’s son, daughter-in-law and grand-daughter. We also learned more about this house that has been in the family since the 1950’s originally owned by Douglas’s grandfather, and now owned by his dad. Over the years, the house has been a summer gathering spot for Douglas, his siblings, and now his own kids and their cousins. It is filled with lots of traditions and history, and we learned about many of them as well as the surrounding area.
Later in the afternoon, Douglas was kind enough to let us use his car for a quick trip to the grocery store. Afterwards, Mark dropped Denise and the groceries at the boat, then he went back to the house for more visiting with Douglas and his family. He stayed longer than expected, but Denise relished the “alone” time and Mark had fun with his old friend from “the hood”. Mark returned before dinner, but since we had a late lunch we were not hungry and ended up with a light snack later in the evening instead.
We took some pictures around Onset and of the PIYC :
Throughout the day we had been watching the weather back home and the tracking of Hurricane/Tropical Storm Elsa. Our concern was for our home, which was not in the direct path, but we know from Hurricane Charley (2004) that things can change. We also were watching the forecasted path for the storm and wondering when we should leave for Gloucester, MA, our next stop and where we had already made reservations for a mooring ball in the harbor. We decided to wait until the morning weather forecast to make a final decision.
Wednesday (7/7) – Onset, MA
Based on input from the locals we met in the yacht club on Monday, Denise went for a nice, but hilly run in the Onset area. First she ran to and through a golf club community, and then through the Village of Onset and was able to capture a few sites in pictures.
In the morning, we looked at the weather and made the decision to wait one more day to leave. The weather looked good for Thursday, but we would leave early in the morning in order to catch the tide through the Cape Cod Canal. We also had chores to do, so we immediately set out to get these done, including changing the boat’s transmission oil (Mark) and doing 2 loads of laundry (Denise) at the yacht club. We also talked with family who now reported that Elsa had a nominal impact on Central Florida, but was headed for the Carolina’s and up the eastern seaboard over the weekend.
After lunch Mark had several conference calls, and Denise went to the Village of Onset Post Office to mail a few things, arriving while they were still closed for the lunch hour. Not wanting to waste time, she went window shopping through some of the stores in the Village until they reopened. Once the errand was complete, she returned to the boat, passing by the town wharf that was now very crowded as the sunny day and now warmer temperatures brought many to Onset Beach.
In the afternoon, Douglas’ brother David came by with his wife Laura to see our boat. We had last seen David in 2004 when we visited Onset by car on our way to Cape Cod. We had a chance to talk for a while, but would not see them again as they were leaving in the morning to go back to their home in West Virginia.
Also during the afternoon a Tropical Storm Watch had been issued for the Cape Cod area and we did not like the weather forecast for Gloucester. The potential impact of Elsa had us concerned that we would be spinning on a mooring ball for 4 nights and through a tropical storm in a very large and open harbor. We evaluated the option of staying in Onset, but we would be exposed here a bit too. Then Denise suggested we consider going into Boston instead; we knew we would be protected at the Constitution Marina where we have stayed several times. Mark called and confirmed they did had space and would be able to accommodate us. He also called Gloucester harbormaster to cancel our mooring reservation, and was directed to cancel the reservation through DOCKWA, where we had made the original reservation. We feared we would not get a refund, but agreed to deal with that later. We now had a protected area that we could ride out the storm safely. We would still leave early in the morning and head now to Boston instead of Gloucester (10 miles shorter in distance).
Meanwhile, during the day we made plans to go to dinner with Douglas and Sissy. In the evening we walked over to the house, and had pre-dinner drinks and more conversation with all the family. Then Douglas drove us on to Cape Cod and the town of Catumet to eat at The Chart Room. This is a very popular place and it was packed when we arrived, even on a weeknight. We knew in advance it would be a long wait for dinner and we were ok with that as this was a great opportunity to spend more time together before we leave in the morning. The restaurant overlooks a marina, so we walked around the grounds, and took some pictures before our table was ready. We had a terrific meal and a great time, staying later than we normally would. Afterwards Douglas and Sissy dropped us at the yacht club and we said good-bye, promising to connect again soon. We now have our eyes set on a Miami Boat Show weekend as a possible get together in February 2022, and David may even come down too.
It had been a great few days with these fine people and we look forward to another opportunity to get together again. PIYC is a terrific club and we really enjoyed the beauty and hospitality of the place. We just may have to stop here again on our way home.