Destination – Penobscot Bay, Maine (Part 10 – Provincetown, MA)


August 1 – 31, 2005

Saturday, August 27, 2005 – Provincetown, MA

Wow, what a night!

After yesterdays trip, the 4 hour hop across Cape Cod Bay would be a breeze!
We lazed about most of the morning without a care in the world; there was no rush and no worries about making the next harbor before nightfall, nothing… we had reserved a mooring at Flyer’s; yet another first for us.

While lounging in our cockpit, we struck up a conversation with the folks on the sailboat that had been tied off alongside the main dock… as it turns out, they were on their way to Penobscot Bay themselves… a 20+ hour sail through the night. They suggested we do the same, and we considered it for quite some time, but in the end, we decided to stick to our plans; one-day legs… no more. We didn’t want to push our luck any further than we already had… 60 miles out to sea for 20+ hours at night with the potential for fog and commercial traffic was more than we were willing to gamble on, so off to Provincetown we went!

Oh, I forgot to mention, as we sat there, a sailboat floated down the canal sideways! Yep, Floated! Sideways! Ah, the price you pay for not paying attention to the tides!

As we motored out of the canal and readied our sails, we were greeted with absolutely flat waters and not even a hint of a breeze… figures, the wind is only around when you don’t want it! We resigned ourselves to motoring across Cape Cod Bay, and off we went. Motoring and with flat seas, we made the approach to P-Town in record time, radioed Flyer’s for a mooring assignment and headed in.

The Pilgrim Monument on our approach to Provincetown, MA

The Pilgrim Monument on our approach to Provincetown, MA

We had anchored many times before, pulled into slips and tied up to docks,  but we had never “picked up” a mooring.

This was a new challenge; we readied ourselves. I would have to approach the mooring ball up wind, turn at precisely the right time to drift down to it, while, Maria, poised at the bow with our boat hook, would reach down and snatch the floated line securing it to our bow cleat just in time for it to tighten and hold us fast. The slightest miscalculation and we would suffer dire consequences!

Piece of cake!

We are the greatest!

OK, perhaps it’s not actually as difficult as people had made it out to be.

Tied securely to our mooring, we got down to the business at hand… time to party! We cleaned ourselves up, hailed the launch for a pick-up and headed into town. If you haven’t been to Provincetown, you owe it to yourself to visit at least once… it is an amazing town. The people are great and cover the entire social spectrum: college kids; artists; retirees; newlyweds; vacationers (US and overseas); cruisers (us); year-rounders and summer residents… all of the above come in several flavors of both heterosexual and homosexual singles and couples. The most amazing thing is that they all seem to fit in… ignoring of course the men in full drag on roller skates!

But seriously, you watch the various pairs walking down the street, and it just seems OK… I’m not sure why, perhaps because you expect it, perhaps because there is enough of each that no one couple stands out as odd… any way, wonderful experience.

We walked the streets, trying to remember where we had and hadn’t been the last time we were here. Once again, I’m not sure if it’s simply old age setting in, or the shift in perspective (arriving by sea), but we’re never really sure… always an odd sense of déjà vu!  We stopped by every restaurant and little café reading the menus and looking for a place to eat. We had a few hours before dinner, but what the heck!  We went into various shops, walked down to the waterfront, and simply took in the town as we enjoyed our evening and made plans for the following day.

As the evening wore on, our thoughts turned back to dinner (no question, Hobbits!) We had spotted a rather high-end restaurant named Ross’ Grill and decided we would splurge!

We had an excellent glass of wine while we waited out on the balcony for our table to become available… we were shortly seated and ordered 6 shrimp, 6 oysters and 6 clams from the raw bar along with two glasses of an equally amazing champagne… Maria ordered the seafood risotto accompanied by another glass of champagne and I of course had the steak accompanied by another glass of the aforementioned red… we finished it off with an amazing piece of bread pudding and dark delicious coffee! To top it all off, the service was phenomenal!

Nothing I say would do it justice, so I’ll leave it at this… If you are within 100 miles of this place, you owe it to yourself to stop for dinner. Here’s a link to their website – Ross’ Grill Provincetown and a photo from their balcony.  BTW, I did not take this photo, it is from their website – hoping they don’t mind that I borrowed it!

Ross' Grill - Provincetown, MA

Ross’ Grill – Provincetown, MA

After dinner, we walked the town a bit and eventually made our way over to the local Portuguese bakery and picked up a loaf of bread for tomorrow’s breakfast.  I couldn’t resist and picked up one of their fried dough treats as well.  Not sure what it was called, but it sure looked good!  We then asked around to see where we could buy some eggs and were directed into town to a local gas station with one of those little minimarts. We found our way through the back streets and eventually procured the eggs… plastic shopping bag in hand, we made our way back to the tourist sections of town… we were really getting the hang of this cruiser thing… first backpacking our dirty cloths to a laundry and now this!

Around 10:30 or so, we walked over to the wharf and picked up the launch that would take us back out to Rocinante, bobbing gently on her mooring.

Rocinante on her mooring in Provincetown.

Rocinante on her mooring in Provincetown.

It really was a great day…

Till next time,

Carlos & Maria
SV Rocinante…_/)