On August 27th, a perfect summer day, I went on a great adventure, circumnavigating Cape Ann in a boat! Sponsored by the Cape Ann Museum, this was a Harbor Tours cruise to see all six lighthouses that stand around Cape Ann. This turned out to be one of the best days of my whole summer, a fabulous experience.
I had to get up early to catch the 8:30 train from North Station (I have to allow an hour to get from Jamaica Plain to North Station on the Orange Line, so this was a very early departure for me. I’m not a morning person.) It all worked out, and I got to the dock in Gloucester in good time.
We set out on this little boat, King Eider, which was rather full with the group from the museum. There was no space to spare. I found a place in the bow and stayed there for the duration as I wanted to get an unobstructed view and take photos.
First we passed Rocky Neck, the old art colony, one of my favorite parts of Gloucester. Just beyond there we saw the first lighthouse on Tenpound Island, a small rocky island in the harbor.
Then it was on to Eastern Point Light at the mouth of the harbor, with the breakwater extending out from the point. People were walking on the breakwater.
Tenpound Island Light
Eastern Point Light
We saw the Thomas E. Lannon sailing in the outer Harbor as we rounded Eastern Point.
Ever since we returned from Maine in July, I’d been watching the weather reports for a cooler day to go up to Salem to see the exhibition Childe Hassam and the Isles of Shoals at the Peabody Essex Museum.
Childe Hassam 1859 – 1935, United States, Poppies, Isles of Shoals, 1891, Oil on canvas, overall: 50.2 x 61 cm (19 3/4 x 24 in.) framed: 73.5 x 83.8 x 6.7 cm (28 15/16 x 33 x 2 5/8 in.) Gift of Margaret and Raymond Horowitz 1997.135.1 Courtesy National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.
A week ahead of time I spotted my day on the 10-day forecast. Tuesday August 23rd was it, a beautiful crisp morning, the coolest in a long time. As planned, I woke up early and got myself down to Long Wharf in time to catch the 9:30 boat to Salem. I could have taken the train, a half hour trip from North Station; the museum is about three blocks from the station. What made this day into an adventure was that I had decided to take the boat to Salem, which I had never done before. One of the many great things about being retired is that I can do things on weekdays when they’re less crowded, and our boat was not crowded at all.
It was a sparkling morning on the water, and I was full of excitement. As we pulled out of Boston, I watched the skyline recede.
Rowe’s Wharf (center) and harbor
Leaving Boston behind