Well, we never actually spent much time in Provincetown, to tell you the truth. My parents had a cottage in Wellfleet and I remember growing up, going there summers, the whole old Cape Cod experience, kids in the back of a station wagon and mosquitoes and campfires and lots of fried clams. When John and I were first married we sometimes took the ferry over to Nantucket, and that was such fun. Once we had children, we stopped doing that, though. Anyway… my parents left us the place in Wellfleet and we thought, why not give our kids what I’d experienced, those long Cape Cod summers? But who wanted to be on the road that long?

We hit on the perfect solution: we keep a car—an old beater, really—in Wellfleet, and we take the ferry down. Our neighbor comes and picks us up at MacMillan and takes us to Wellfleet, and we have the whole summer to just be together, go swimming in the kettle ponds or at the beach, play cards or Monopoly at night, we absolutely limit the kids’ phone time and it really is like a breath of the past.

I feel nostalgic, in fact, the moment we step onto the ferry. It’s like we cross a line somewhere there, between our regular modern lives and our slower, sleepier Cape Cod life. The ferry is the translation between the two worlds. If we drove, we’d arrive cranky and hot. Instead, we get our first glimpse of the ocean, we get to be calm and happy and arrive refreshed. That’s priceless.

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