Friday, July 30, 2004

Cape Cod, Summer 2004
July 14th – 29th

Wednesday, July 14th: Dora and I left with the trailer hooked up at 10 AM. We met Herman & Chris and Bert & Jean at the Tim Hortons on Casablanca Blvd. After a cup of coffee, we fell into a convoy and headed for the border. Herman had three 2-way radios which proved very convenient, and a lot of fun. After crossing the border at Lewiston, we traveled along through upstate New York and stopped for the night at a rest area. The next day we completed our trip and arrived at Peter’s Pond Park, Sandwich Massachusetts on Cape Cod, mid-afternoon. The trip went well without any unhappy incidents.

Peter’s Pond Park is a private campground with full hook-up, including cable TV (!), and yet has the happy feature of many trees and private campsites. The “pond” is a fresh water lake and the park is not too far from the ocean.

On Friday, the 16th, we drove up to Provincetown at the very tip of the Cape, the place the Pilgrims landed November 1620. We climbed the Pilgrim memorial, toured the museum, and walked around the quaint town. Sadly, the ambience of the town is ruined by the many openly homosexual and lesbian people walking around holding hands and showing other public displays of affection. We knew that the Cape, and especially Provincetown, are infamous for being a gathering place for homosexuals, but were not prepared for what we experienced there. If the Pilgrim Fathers knew….

Saturday was a slow day. We made it out to nearby Sandwich, an old town with some nice shops and buildings.

Sunday morning we went to church at the local Orthodox Presbyterian Church in Barnstable. The service and the sermon, preached by the Rev. Dr. Charles Wingard, were good. The congregation was open and friendly. Since the second service was in Portuguese (the Cape has a population of about 20,000 Brazilians) we spent the rest of the day at the campsite. In the afternoon we listened to an excellent sermon by the late Rev. J.D. Wielenga on Aaron’s, Jannes’ and Jambres’ (et al) rods turning into reptiles (Exo 7:8-13). It was great to hear Dick’s voice again.

Monday started slowly although in the afternoon we rode our bikes for some 16 miles from Dennis to Chatham. The Cape is laced with great bike trails. Bert road with us in his power chair.

Tuesday was a highlight of the trip, the day we went to Martha’s Vineyard, an island off the Cape. We went on the ferry as foot passengers and rented a car on the island—a Mitsubishi Montero. That worked very well. We “did” most of the island including the very impressive cliffs at one end, the beach with its Atlantic surf, and several of the quaint towns along the way. Edgerton is an old fishing village with narrow streets and houses dating from the early 1800s. Oak Bluff is known for its neighbourhoods of colourful Victorian cottages.

Wednesday was another slow day. We loaded up bikes and power chair to go for a bike ride. As we were about to start off, Bert & Jean noticed their keys were locked in their PT Cruiser. Thankfully the Autoclub was able to help us out.

On Thursday we went to Hyannis, JFK’s hometown. We toured the JFK museum and memorial. That brought back all the memories and feelings of November 23rd, 1963. (“Where were you when you heard the JFK was shot?”—Everyone my age and older will be able to tell you.) We were going to finish the day off with a harbour tour that would have taken us past the Kennedy Compound, but the fogged had rolled in and we would not have seen anything.

On Friday we drove to the Barnstable harbour for a four-hour whale watch cruise. Out on the open Atlantic we saw three 40 foot long (approx.) humpbacks spouting and diving. Impressive! The boat was also impressive. It was powered by five Detroit Diesel engines that have a combined horsepower of 7200. With the throttle opened, the boat did some serious sailing!

On Saturday, Dora and I biked along the Canal separating the Cape from the rest of Massachusetts. We made good use of our Silver Anniversary Bikes!

Sunday, July 25th, we again went to the local OPC in Barnstable. Again, we were edified and challenged by the proclamation of the Word of God. In the afternoon we listened to another sermon by the late J.D. Wielenga. The text was Exodus 7:25 – 8:15, the Frog Plague.

On Monday we went back to Hyannis for the harbour tour. There was no fog so the boat sailed. From the harbour of Hyannisport we were able to see the Kennedy Compound and the houses of JFK, Robert and Edward Kennedy. When we were back on land we toured Hyannisport by car. From there we traveled to Chatham, the most eastern town in the USA, and followed a scenic bike route.

On Tuesday, Dora and I drove up to Plymouth. We saw the Rock and walked around the lovely old town of Plymouth. Highlights were the old courthouse and churches.

Wednesday was the day to pack up and head back home. We stopped halfway at a truck stop for a night's sleep and arrived home in good time on Thursday.

We thank the Lord for safe traveling, good company and a wonderful vacation.