We know we’re lucky to have both Gram and her beautiful New Silver Beach in North Falmouth, Mass. We went this past weekend to see them both. It’s a second home to many of us and when we go there we have expectations: watching a baseball game, eating good food, swimming, stars, an ocean breeze, a good night’s sleep, and inspiration from a woman who loves it all. We are rarely let down.
Food is the big focus and usually the first order of activity is to figure out the next meal, or jump right into the one that’s in progress. That’s just what we did this past Saturday night and added some of our own to the pot; barbecued chicken, beer, and green beans and tomatoes from our garden.
What’s great for us is that the beach is a short walk away from Gram’s. We can’t see it from the house and we can’t even hear it. But we can smell the ocean and feel it in the air, salty and breezy. We love the walk. In fact, we tell ourselves and others that it’s so much better not to live on the beach, better to be a few blocks away. After all, where do you walk to when your house is on the beach, when you’re already there?
It was my husband, and not I, who grew up there. The stories have always been of a carefree childhood in the 60’s and a wild time in the 70’s, and it looks like those days have returned. On the weekends this summer that I’ve been lucky enough to get out of the city and to New Silver, the good night’s sleep doesn’t start until the beach party ends. The “New Silver Beach Improvement Association” organizes swimming lessons for the kids throughout the summer, Sunday night kid movies at dusk on the tennis courts, and the traditional Fourth of July “Horribles Parade”, when all the little kids dress up in costume (anything goes; patriotic Uncle Sam, ocean mermaids, you name it) and stroll through town. Throw in a few clam bakes and you have the perfect summer vacation spot.
The beach is not as big and expansive as the better known “Old Silver Beach”, but big enough for four jetties set several hundred yards apart, with one big long “fishing jetty” and a little creek down the south end where we go clamming. It’s on the western side of a little peninsula, making it one of the few places on the east coast where you can watch the sun setting over the ocean. Sail boats and motor boats of all types and sizes are docked in Wild Harbor and dot the bay.
One of the best things about New Silver is the Tea Room. The scene of all those wild parties way back when, it is still the center of activity and fun for kids of all ages. A small arcade, candy, cold drinks, pizza and an ice cream stand are all just one block from the beach in the Tea Room. There are always a half dozen bikes dropped out front and it is the meeting place. Across from the tennis courts and playground, the Tea Room is where teenagers meet at night before moving their party to the beach.
We never miss a trip to TRICS (Tea Room Ice Cream Stand) before we leave. Serving up Giffords ice cream from Maine, TRICS offers only 7 or 8 flavors, but they are the best; the standard chocolate, vanilla and strawberry, plus our favorites, chocolate mousse tracks, Maine black bear, and wild raspberry. We each got a small, yet gigantic, cone. On the Fourth of July it was so hot we had to eat them fast before they melted into our hands. This time we could take our time and stroll the beach enjoying our ice creams.
On Sunday, Gram, who used to swim everyday of the summer, took out her walker, tossed it down the front porch steps and announced she needed to walk into the ocean. It was the Feast of the Assumption, and there’s an old custom of receiving a blessing or miracle from the sea on this special holy day. It was a bit cloudy and windy by the time we got there, but it was high tide and the water was warm. The conditions were perfect for an old lady and her family to get blessed by the sea at New Silver Beach.
New Silver Beach is a community of a few hundred year round families and is located on Cape Cod in North Falmouth, Massachusetts, 65 miles southeast from Boston. It is on the northern rim of Buzzards Bay to the northeast of Old Silver Beach.