Packing for the beach

Our pond

For the past four summers I’ve rented the same vacation house in Wellfleet. It is a place that must be experienced to be understood. I know, that sounds dramatic, doesn’t it? But, this comfortable and compact house, which sits on a gloriously private piece of property only accessible by the most rutted dirt roads imaginable, is absolutely perfect. Once I’m here, I never want to leave.

Over the years I’ve spent in this particular location, I’ve introduced and subsequently shared this lovely home with a number of friends. It’s always such a joy to witness their response to “my” one week a year residence. Seeing is believing and watching a new visitor take in this idyllic view is always gratifying. Seriously, I never get tired of it.

Traveling with a group of people can be complicated. Body clocks, meal preferences, life pace…there are so many things to consider when one merges friend groups and social circles. Due to the absolute magic of this property, I’m sure, the people I have brought together in this little house have connected in a fantastic way. Meals have been shared, group walks taken, wine bottles consumed and remarkably, friendships have formed. It’s honestly amazing.

Each year the crew collected varies somewhat. Calendars don’t always cooperate to align and other commitments have at times rudely demanded the very same week. Romances end. And begin. Despite the inconsistency of the company‘s composition, my roomies always meld in a seamless and easy fashion. It’s been absolutely wonderful.

This year’s Cape family has been, like every other experience, a genuine delight. At the mid week point we still haven’t reached capacity, which has given our smaller group the flexibility to travel as a unit of four. We’ve caught some spectacular sunsets, taken a wonderful beach walk and enjoyed some tasty treats, all with absolute low key organization necessary. It has been effortless.

My packing list these days for a week at the beach is a much different one than the one I actually wrote on the back of envelope during my years traveling out here with my family. No longer do I fill 4 Rubbermaid bins with linens and multiple bathing suits and snacks for five. These days it’s much easier – some clothes, sheets for my bed, towels for beach, bath and dog, and a few groceries. And multiple bathing suits, of course.

Meals have been incredibly delicious and devoid of debate. Because, in addition to my packing of necessary linens and cute sundresses, I brought along friends who cook. And bake. And mix cocktails. Seriously, it has been a dream. Our palates and sensibilities and appetites compliment one another in a way which has resulted in some fantastic meals. Blueberry Puff and Corncakes and Potato Torta and Soft Scrambled Eggs with Fresh Corn and Blueberry Scones and Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Herbs made three distinctly different ways. Simple ingredients prepared well. I would never ask for more.

When we go on vacation, what we pack is important. But, even more critical is who we pack. Bring the folks who don’t mind chasing a sunset, wading through high tide or walking to the ocean just to hear the waves – and who like to cook and eat.

2 thoughts on “Packing for the beach

  1. The only thing I found more impressive than the stunning setting, was the endearing company. What a wonderful group of people, plus one dog!

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