Provincetown, Night 1/Day 1 Part 1, August 31-September 1

1) I tend to keep to myself when I'm traveling - Mother always taught me not to talk to strangers - but when I showed up way too early for the ferry and there was only one person in line, it's better to talk. Turns out we have mutual friends, and he has a husband. (They always have husbands.)

1a) Except when they don't, like the Man Younger Than I I met on the prow, making his first trip to P'town from [Insert Name of Big City Here]. I'd gone out to see the evening light on the harbor islands (beautiful, as always), and there he was taking it all in with a big smile. We stayed out there chatting until the first big wave came along, and then we felt it prudent to return indoors.

2) Usually the ferry crossing is smooth, but this trip there was a pronounced roll, or swell, or whatever you call that vigorous up-and-down motion of a ship on the waves. It did not disturb my gin and tonic or my nap.

3) Mine Host collected me at the pier and then prepared before my very eyes a homemade steak dinner with a "Lucullan little martini," nachos, heirloom tomatoes, hash browns, delicous mountains of Stilton, and a bottle of superb red. I envy those people who make cooking look so effortless! Lord knows I love entertaining, but I don't exactly project calm in the kitchen.

4) We talked about so much: retirement, our fathers, high school gossip, the summer.

5) After dinner the conversation moved to the hot tub with a couple Rose Kennedys (basically a Cape Codder with club soda). A large moon, luminous as a fire opal behind the clouds, gradually revealed itself. It looked a little furry because I didn't have my glasses on. Where were they?

5a) Because of course if there are Mardi Gras beads on a shelf over a bathrobe, they were meant to be worn in the hot tub.

6) Alas for me, I had indulged too well and passed one of the Worst Nights Ever: violently ill and sometimes pacing the floor with a very bad headache. Robert, when will you learn that you must never ever travel with your Advil?

7) That crisis passed, but then where on Earth were my glasses? I retraced my steps, combed, the house - nada. Ils sont disparu. Annoyed, I took a cup of coffee outside, and there they were, at the bottom of the swimming pool.

8) Now, at almost 1 PM, I'm lounging by the pool huddled in a big bathrobe on a sunny but chilly. day.