Nantucket Summer Birthday

The short little plane trip from Hyannis to Nantucket brings you to another quieter world outside the frenzy that one experiences during Cape Cod summers. Two airlines service Nantucket with mosquito planes that hold eight brave passengers who fasten seat belts as the college kid cargo attendant closes the door much like closing the lid on a can of shoe polish; one last twist for extra measure. But soon the hilarious terror and shifty feeling after take off, which is much like dream flying, give way to the immeasurable blue sea and sky. Below are the dots of myriad pleasure boats and tiny doll house mansions of Hyannisport. Water clear and clean sparkles in the sun and the distant land of the Island appears on the horizon. Too soon the marvelous ride is over and a competent pilot expertly sets our dream ship on the ground and we are trundling out “On Island”.

The first thing you notice about Nantucket is the pace. Unhurried, time for ice creams, window shopping for cashmere in the summer and choosing flowers with the precision of a gemologist. Surely the pace is set by the cobble stone streets and many jewelry shops that destroy even practical girls senses. Even my dear Ralph Lauren has set up camp on the main street with one of the most scrumptious Black and Purple Label shops imaginable. Is this how one works up an appetite? It must be the out of doors that makes everything taste better, or gives everyone better taste.

After succumbing completely to the spell, and several delicious purchases later, we found ourselves at the harbor and in need of something to quench our thirst. One of the many cafes that sit above the street and offer a perfect view of what life on the water is all about, attracted us with charming red parlor chairs and ice cold drinks. Grapefruit juice, please with Grey Goose, of course!

But Nantucket’s charms are all about strolling the shady cobbled streets and delighting to find an art show in a tiny park or an antique car brimming with hat boxes. And each hedgerow has a gate behind which is a garden rivaling an English country manor house, masses of flowers spilling over their edges like champagne poured too quickly into a fine narrow flute. Summer is short here and precious. No one wants to miss a minute of it, so plans are made and parties wait. Our day was no exception, for this day is my birthday. I made a superhero change into a party dress and poppy pumps with buttery shrug to match and we were off to one of my favorite restaurants in the world; the Pearl.


Miraculously this restaurant has continued to remain one of the best since it opened many years ago with a dangerously chic Fusion menu. Today I was delighted to see that the huge wall of the see through fish tank remains the focal point of the entrance. The bar is white onyx with light that comes from within. Behind the bar is a collection of vodkas that are lit from below and shot with blue and green lights, further adding to the effect of being underwater. The interior of the dining room is surrounded by white sheer curtains that have been illuminated from the floor with white light. The effect is that of being inside an oyster. Buttery white leather banquets line the perimeter and white leather chairs face each intimate table. Today was my day to be the pearl and I was rewarded with the very same waiter that I argued with about the temperature of the tuna many years ago. Bill was still there and still just as charming. This time I did not argue, knowing full well the attention to detail the entire staff takes to please their guests. They are all tan, in aqua shirts and incredibly kind and beautiful.

The night continued to play like a favorite song whose melody is meant to be recalled on cold winter, nothing-going-right days. We ate, we laughed, we drank deliciously golden Proseco, and made memories to treasure. And just when I thought it couldn’t get better we boarded a fast ferry and watched the jewel scattered coast slip away. We looked up and saw, to our surprise, the Milky Way, still there and visible from the ink of the ocean. So many diamonds in the sky, our day, our lives all part of the immensity of life. Yes, it was a very nice birthday.

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