Wednesday, May 24, 2006


Originally uploaded by pdbreen.

I know I've been to Nantucket at least once before - when I went flying with John O'Grady we briefly landed at the airport here. But, we never left the airport. At the time, that was kind of fun by itself since there was a sitcom on that focused on life at Tom Nevers Field. I don't recall if I ever sailed here with my family before that. If I did, it was before memory took hold and the stories must have been quite bad as they've never been retold.
So, I didn't know quite what to expect or what to do when I arrived (other than attend the wine festival which was the reason for the trip). In some way, I expected the island to be a bit like a bigger version of Block Island (where I spent many summers and remember well).
In retrospect, it is. The area around the harbor and ferry landing is quite built up - lots of stores, inns, B&Bs, restaurants and shops. Most are independent - but you do see a chain here and there (Polo, Grand Union, Blackdog).
Once you walk away from town (which doesn't take long), you enter the "countryside". What is different from Block Island is that Nantucket is much larger which means that you can't walk from one end of the island to the other in a few hours. However - there are many bike trails and bike rental shops to help out. But, since I was with Nuke, I didn't rent a bike and could only explore what was within walking distance.
Fortunately, this meant all of the downtown area, both ferry docks and the beach next to the Brant Point lighthouse. We also ventured out a few miles on Cliff Rd and discovered a wonderful open space that was very dog friendly. Nuke had a good time chasing sticks and tennis balls as well as just exploreing the paths and greeting the other dogs.
And, its definitely true that Nantucket is dog friendly. I don't think I've ever been on walks where people have stopped so often to great Nuke (who is always happy to accept attention). I also assumed that I was able to bring Nuke into the stores with me and was never told otherwise (though I did end up leaving her outside when I was shopping in the two dog stores - Cold Noses and Sandy Paws - as I couldn't hold her back and shop at the same time).
Nantucket is a truly wonderful, relaxing and friendly place with great shopping and restaurants. And, it does capture some of that European sense of a city where the people and the stores are what makes it come to life. But when I look at what it costs to live on the island (seems like everything is in the millions), the price seems much too high.


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