22 hours on Martha's Vineyard

... otherwise known as when I held my brother and his girlfriend hostage... and made them do everything I wanted to do. But actually, it was a really great day. One of these days I'll have to actually stick around the island for more than 24 hours and relax more - but until then, I'm leading action packed adventure trips.

Similar to last year, we had a small hit list of things we wanted to try and do - but really added a whole bunch more this time. And just like last time I talked Hertz into giving us a beautiful new Jeep Wrangler for the price of a Nissan Versa. It was amazing.

Fast Start
After catching a midmorning boat to the island, we landed in Oak Bluffs. Even though our rental car was in Vineyard Haven, we capitalized on the hiccup by immediately riding the Flying Horses Carousel. The fun part of this Carousel is that everyone tries to get the brass ring. Although none of us got it, there were some valiant attempts. Then we hopped in an Uber to pick up our rental car in Vineyard Haven... and then lunch in Edgartown. It was admittedly a ridiculous idea to drive this route but we had been to R+B for lunch last year and it was a home run. I (still) had a BLT... and it was (still) great. Perhaps even better than last year.

Gay Head Light & Menemsha
It is hard to resist a trip to Gay Head light when on the island - especially when I have learned it is open to the public. After lunch we shot over to the other side of the island to enjoy the view. The top of Gay Head light is really unlike any other that I've been in. It was borderline spacious. I'm used to them being so hot, tiny, and crowded. The view was also quite incredible. Totally worth $6.

Since we were in the area, I convinced my hostages we should also look at Menemsha. I had prepared myself for a big challenge finding parking... and there was none. It wasn't until several hours later that I realized there was plenty of parking because it was a TUESDAY.

While we were walking around Menemsha I ran into this plein air painter I first saw 3 years ago in nearly the same exact spot. I hesitated on whether to say something to her but I introduced myself and told her I had taken her picture 3 years prior... and it was one of my favorite photos.

Evening Activities
During our last trip to the Vineyard we missed out on a trip to Felix Neck for a little birding. Felix Neck is a Mass Audubon property with trails and educational opportunities - but we were just in it for the trails. Our grand master plan was to order a pizza for takeout and while that was cooking away enjoy a nice walk at Felix Neck. Jake spotted three birds he hadn't seen before so that was a victory in my book.

We grabbed our pizza from Edgartown Pizza and took it over to Chappy for sunset. This might be one of the best ideas I've ever had - but we also totally lucked out. We caught the On Time Ferry across the harbor and found Chappy to be deserted - not a soul in the parking lots. So we took the pizza for Wasque Point and enjoyed it on a picnic table looking out onto the water. Pure heaven. We checked out another spot on the island over by Dike Road as well. Given the time of day, the island was just gorgeous with all the big field open space... plus we saw some big deer a couple times.

The last part of the day could be called "circling Edgartown for parking and finding nothing". Despite it being a Tuesday night ... and everything else on the island vacant and easy to access... downtown Edgartown was still BUMPING. The "kids" got ice cream and I stole bites of both options. There was a live concert happening on the fish pier that seemed planned and also neat... but I was getting tired. We closed out the night with a round of National Parks Monopoly and Hogan's Heroes VHS tapes. Yes, VHS tapes.

Morning Stuff
The best and worst part about traveling with me is that I am up early - and I've already done an adventure before you get up. In this case, my morning adventure switched up our breakfast plan from Vineyard Haven to Katama.  I missed sunrise at Edgartown Light but still enjoyed the easy walk out of there. It has been a lifetime since I was in Katama - and it speaks to me now more than it used to perhaps... especially on a week day. At 6 am the beach is deserted and just a light ocean fog rolling around. Heaven.

After picking up the hostages at the house, we grabbed breakfast at Right Fork Diner. The cool part of this place? It is right on a bi-plane airfield along the ocean. You can sit and eat bacon... and watch old planes take off.

Next time? I'd like to explore the Farm Institute in Katama and maybe spend more time just sitting at the beach. My current regret is that I didn't buy this dumb tanktop at a "cheap" t-shirt store in Edgartown. It was $19 ... and I didn't feel like I needed another tanktop. That is still the truth... but with all my free time from work I am crushing my current tanktop inventory. 

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