Just over a year ago, we were thinking things would never be the same again. So much can change in a year. So many lives lost, so many lives brought into this world. Are we really back to normal? Can we live everyday like 3.5 million people haven’t lost their lives to this virus?
Today is the day we can go back to “normal” in Massachusetts. No more masks are necessary if you have been fully vaccinated (but who is out there checking vaccination cards?) I just hope we all still remember everything we have learned. Here is a list of things we should continue to do:
1. Wash our damn hands, because that’s a common thing we should do, right?
2. Stay home if we feel sick, even if we think it’s just a cold.
3. Be aware of other people’s boundaries. Before 6 feet social distancing was a thing, I swear someone behind me in line at the grocery store could count all the freckles on the back of my neck. Respect a stranger’s space.
4. Hugging is my favorite thing to do. Hug more friends and family, And hug often.
5. Get vaccinated. Or not. But you should.
6. Smile. It’s been hidden for so long, someone will appreciate your smile.
I first moved to Cape Cod just over a year ago but I grew up vacationing in Old Orchard Beach, Maine. If you were to blindfold me, I would be able to smell the difference between the two salty shores. One has a more foggy ocean scent and the other is more pure; the kind of air that brings an instant smile to your face. Both seashores are beautiful but I now call one home. If you are lucky enough to visit Cape Cod, I want to share a few of my favorite beaches in our town of Yarmouth:
- Smuggler’s Beach- Located at the mouth of Bass River, Smuggler’s Beach offers a beautiful view of Nantucket Sound and the bustling ships traversing around the river. With a fishing pier and boat launch located on the riverside, this beach offers recreational and leisurely amenities for all travelers. There’s ample parking and a snack bar(due to Covid-19, this is closed) But restrooms are open! The lot usually closes by 10:30 am because it is full, so get there early! There is a parking fee.
- Windmill Beach- A hidden gem located on Bass River. Tucked away off of River Street in South Yarmouth, the beach is named for the windmill that sits on the property. Originally constructed in 1791 by Judah Baker, the beach has a small parking area with seasonal guided tours of the windmill and porta-potty.
- Colonial Acres Beach- Colonial Acres Beach is located off Standish Way and is known for its’ views of Hyannis Harbor and Lewis Bay. It has a boardwalk leading the way to the seashell covered sand with vistas of ferry boats and knockabouts. Small parking area with beach sticker required and no bathrooms.
- Seagull Beach- Seagull Beach is set upon the mouth of Parker’s River and offers a jetty along the river and a mile of white sandy beach. Seasonal snack bar and bathrooms with very large parking area (with fee). It’s the gateway to Great Island and an excellent spot for bird watching if that is something you enjoy! ( Piping Plover sanctuary)
- Bass Hole- If you call it Grey’s Beach then everyone will know you’re a tourist (haha). Bass Hole recreational area is more than just a beach. It has miles of walking trails with outstanding views of Barnstable Harbor, Sandy Neck Light, and Chase Garden Creek. A covered picnicking area, grills, and playground are just the beginning of all the fun you can have. Boasting the longest elevated boardwalk of Cape Cod, the view of the sunset on the bay is breathtaking. With a small boat launch area and seasonal bathrooms, Bass Hole provides something for everyone. During low tide it’s a short walk through shallow water to Chapin Beach, one of the jewels of the Dennis beaches.
Even in the off season, these beaches are great spots to visit. Most beaches are dog friendly after 5 pm. We love to let our dogs off leash to play on the beach They try to catch the seagulls and love to run in the sand. If only we could be as carefree in the sand as a dog or a child. Beaches bring a sense of tranquility in the moment. A Reiki healer once told me that my soul needed the beach and the ocean. I don’t think I have ever heard something more true than that from a complete stranger. Ever since then, I find myself more drawn to the sea. I feel the connection, the promise, and the devotion my soul has for it. When you visit any of these beaches, I hope they can bring you the same happiness and connection we all need right now during these unusual historic times.