Part 22: Narragansett Bay, RI to Gilbertville, MA


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The Trip

While uploading photos from my Leica M8 camera, I found a set of photos that I should have posted many days ago.  These are at the front of the set of photos shown below.

When we finished at Narragansett Bay, we headed out to Cape Cod.  More specifically, our destination was that mecca of alternative lifestyles, Provincetown, MA.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

When we were in the Washington, DC area, our hosts John and Alice directed us to the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Quantico, VA.  The photo above is the entrance to the musuem.

There were many nice artifacts in the museum and it was well done.  Above is a vintage WWII fighter-bomber used by the corps, perhaps the one flown by Pappy Boyington.

A Harrier jump jet.

A Korean War vintage helicopter.

A rare biplane.

Very interesting architecture in the museum.  Most of the displays were too dim to photograph and I did not bring a flash for the Leica, so these were all the musem photos.  In summary, we both enjoyed the exhibits.  My WWII history is not stellar, so I was very shocked at the brutalality of the Pacific Campaigns and the number of losses on both sides.  The museum does justice to the Corps and it is well worth a visit if you are in the area.  The museum was a refreshing change from the "mall museums" normally associated with WDC.

Back to the present, we spent the night at Fort Getty.  Next morning, we had a nice view of the boats in the nearby harbor.

The beaches near Fort Getty were rocky and generally lacking sand.

As we left our camp at Fort Getty, we stopped for a view of the beach.  The urge to bust over the berm and drive on the beach was strong, but logic prevailed and we continued on into the nearby village of Jamestown for lunch.

Knock me over with a feather.  There we were in Jamestown walking to lunch and we passed this young gal walking her pig on a leash.  Recognize the irony here given our recent expedition Florida, to be seeking such an animal and failing and then to see one in a town.  I knicknamed it BIT for "bacon in training".

I have to say the pig was rather cute.  Not cute enough to find it's way onto a leash of mine, but more attractive than some of the dogs I have seen recently.  I can only guess what the baggie is for.

The bridge over the east passage on Narragansett Bay was very impressive.  Both big and tall.  From Jamestown, RI we drove on to Cape Cod and on to the end of the cape at Provincetown.  Known to the locals as P-Town, the town is a haven for, and destination resort of, the alternative lifestyle crowd.

The cafe scene was hopping when got there during the late afternoon.  We vere very lucky to get a camp at the site closest to the town, and just a short bike ride away.  We unloaded the bikes and then did a booze-cruise on Main Street (AKA Commercial Ave.).

There was a festival in progress when we got there.  The structure above is the Pilgrim Monument dedicated to the early settlers in the region.

Next to the P-Town library was a private residence that had some interesting statuary.

Some of the other statues in this private residence.  Very interesting, I can only imagine the demeanor of the owners.

The pedestrian, bike and car traffic on Commercial got very heavy after nightfall; nearly impossible to ride without hitting somebody.  Above is a view of part of the street in the late afternoon before the traffic increased to insane levels.  In some sections of the Avenue, there were many more art galleries than restaurants.  The very narrow streets made driving difficult.

Some of the locals.

P-Town has a very nice harbor with plenty of boats.  Many restaurants have nice views of the bay.

This was one of the larger boats in the area.

This car would fit right in at Burning Man.

Pilgrim Monument was completed in 1910 with the first stone laid by Theodore Roosevelt in 1907.  The tower is the tallest granite structure in the U.S.  The tower is very impressive and it dominates the local skyline.

The water in the harbor was clear and clean, not like some of the harbors I have seen.  You can actually see the bottom of the harbor in the photo above.

The beaches were nice with soft sand, but the water was cold.  As you might expect, there were some expensive homes and inns by the seashore.

From P-Town, we traveled west to Gilbertville, MA to visit Fred and Jane DeBros at their mountain home.  Everybody that lives in the country has nice tractors to play with, and Fred was no exception.

Fred uses his dump trailer for carrying firewood.

Whoa, what we have here is ground beef.  The black blob is Fred and Jane's cow that likes to sleep next to this older BMW.  At least the cow has good taste, but that does not mean that it will taste good.

They also have several donkeys.  Fred and Jane had tickets to Garrison Keiler's Prarie Home Companion performance at Tanglewood in the Berkshires and they invited us to go along.  We went without tickets and were able to score some great seats from ticket sellers at the gate.  There were a ton of people there for the show and it was a great time.

Next day, Fred took us to nearby Quabbin Reservoir for a photo opportunity.  The reservoir was built on the site of several towns and essential the towns were condemed via the rule of emminent domain to allow filling of the reservoir.

Quabbin is a pretty big reservoir.  The overlook provided an expansive view of the area.  Sadly, the overcast limited the visibility.

At the overlook, I spotted this nice GT3 Porsche.  A great weekend car, but likely pretty rough-riding as a daily driver.

We also spotted this vintage 280SL Mercedes in great condition.  The owner is in the red shirt.

Atop the highest hill in the area is a stone tower built in the 1940s, so we climbed to the top to check it out.  Above, Jane, Kathleen and Fred head up to see the view.

The discharge for the reservoir goes through this narrow canyon.  The retaining dam is on the right.

We were driving back to Fred's place and I spotted a large snapping turtle by the side of the road, so I stopped to investigate.  These guys are fast and resisted strongly when we attempted to pick him up to get him off the road.  Hissing and snapping, he was a handfull.  I am sure that a bite would be a bad thing for many reasons, not the least of which is the trauma inflicted by the beak and an innoculation with salmonella that most reptiles carry.

This fellow was big, the shell was perhaps 15" long.  Note the tail.  But, sadly, it has been injured by a car.  So, despite it's protests, we scooped it up and took it back to Fred's place for safety.  Note the front left leg is tucked underneath and likely broken.

A parting shot of Fred's Swiss 404 with newly installed hydraulic dump bed.  From left: Bill, Fred and Jane.

Again, we were greatly surprised by the generosity that we were shown by our friends.  We really enjoyed the time we spent with Fred and Jane.  We enjoyed P-Town as well, but that was a totally different sort of experience.  Alternate lifestyle issues notwithstanding, P-Town has many interesting things to see and there were many great restaurants as well.  I must say that we had the best mojitos of our lives at Bayside Betsy's.  Truly awsome.  So nice, we had 2, but at $10 a drink there is an upper bound to my thirst.

Tomorrow, we would leave Gilbertville and continue our travels north toward Maine.

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Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2010, all rights reserved.
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