By the wonders of technology I’m posting from a Peter Pan motor coach (the founder of the bus line was named Peter), making a nearly two-hour trip from Woods Hole, Massachusetts, where we just got off a ferry boat from Martha’s Vineyard. We’re headed to Boston’s South Station, where we’ll catch a cab to our hotel for the night, and we’ll fly back to Chicago tomorrow.
Between trains (the L to Midway airport), planes (to and from Boston), buses and ferries, I’ll just say you really have to want to go to Martha’s Vineyard to go to Martha’s Vineyard.
We really wanted to go.
For one, it’s a place neither Beth nor I had ever been. More important was the occasion: Our friends’ daughter’s wedding. We were lucky enough to get invited and we probably were the first to RSVP YES.
Claire the bride is a delightful young woman who also happens to be a White Sox fan and who shares with me a special affection for a little known player named Willie Harris. Willie scored the only (and the winning) run in game four of the White Sox World Series sweep of the Houston Astros in 2005. There’s a lot more to love about Claire, but she had me at Willie Harris.
There’s also a lot to love about her new husband Alex, including his family history of summering on the island, and his parents retiring there. That history brought us all there for the wedding. Claire and Alex are one of those couples you like to be around. The kind that make you hopeful. Optmistic. Individually they’re terrific people, and they’re even better together. Happiness and optimism pervaded the event from start to finish. The wedding was eloquently officiated by Claire’s aunt Jill, on a beautiful hillside, on a spectacular sun-drenched Saturday afternoon, which morphed into a beautiful pastel sunset of an evening filled with dinner and dancing.
And did I mention oysters?
Yes. Oysters. During the cocktail hour after the ceremony, two young men shucked oysters before our eyes. And we ate them. Many of them. Maybe it was the event and the atmosphere, but I think those were the best oysters I ever had.
We stayed at a hotel called Summercamp—so named for its proximity to The Martha’s Vineyard Campmeeting Association (MVCMA). Back in the 1800s various protestant congregations would hold summer religious retreats. The one in Martha’s Vineyard developed into what is now a National Landmark. It’s a fairy-tale like village of colorful gingerbread cottages—all encircling a central tabernacle. It’s got it’s own rich history—if you get out that way, take a walk through.
And if that all isn’t enough, there was this: Jaws. It was filmed on Martha’s Vineyard back in 1974. If you’re a regular Safe & Sound reader, you may know I have a Jaws thing. And though I didn’t have time to see all the filming locations, I did get to see the beach where little Alex Kintner became a snack.
It was worth every mile. Thanks Claire and Alex.