Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Travels with Clancy: Martha's Vineyard

Clancy and I at Owen Park in Vineyard Haven

Clancy and I hit the road with some family members back in May and spent a week on the island of Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts.

This was Clancy's first trip out of the Midwest, and he was thrilled to death and couldn't wait to get on the road the morning that we left. There's nothing Clancy loves more than riding in the car, even if the ride involves driving more than 900 miles over two days. He couldn't have been happier in the van.

As I've mentioned in previous posts, my family on my father's side has been on the Vineyard for centuries. My grandparents bought a small summer cottage in the 1960s for our family to share and I've spent many vacations there throughout my life. It's always fun to get back to the island and pull in to the drive of our little place.

Our cottage is in the town of West Tisbury, which is also home to the most charming town hall I've ever seen.

Red maples at the Town Hall

My favorite place on the Vineyard is Aquinnah, home of the famous Aquinnah cliffs and the historic Gay Head lighthouse, and the setting for my novel-in-progress, The Ghosts of Aquinnah.

Clancy liked being there too.

Coming in a very close second is the fishing village of Menemsha.

The Coast Guard station at Menemsha

There's no better place on the island to watch a sunset, and I've spent many nights on the Menemsha beach watching the sun slowly disappear into Vineyard Sound. 

If there was one place on the island that Clancy hated, it was the south shore beach called Katama. As the southern coast of the island is all open ocean, the waves are generally fairly big. And while there is nothing I love more than the sound of the waves crashing onto the shore, Clancy completely disagreed.

Clancy was scared to death of the waves but tried to put on a brave front. He raised his fur and barked at them to let them know he wasn't going to stand for any of their nonsense.

He was much happier when we moved farther up on the sand and away from the reach of the water, and he even agreed to smile for the camera.

He wasn't any happier about the calm water at Lobsterville Beach.

But I told him he had to just deal with it because I love it.

As vacations always seem to do, the week flew by and before we knew it it was time to head home. But I couldn't have asked for a better week to relax and unwind while enjoying the island I love.

Menemsha Sunset

I'm not sure when it will be, but I'm already looking forward to the day when Clancy and I can return to Martha's Vineyard.


  1. You knew I would LOVE these photos - especially the one of the Coast Guard station :)

    I've never been to the Vineyard, but I hope to visit one day.

    I can see how happy Clancy was that you came to your senses and moved away from the water LOL!

  2. I was born in and spent a lot of time in the North East, but I've never been to Martha's Vineyard - and after looking at your pics I'm really jealous of you! It looks so spectacular. Oh, I wish I could go there for a summer. It's about 110F here now and I could really use a cool ocean breeze. :-)

  3. Look at all those boats in the background. This book had better be full of rich privileged young white people. Just kidding. I know there's probably a migrant worker or two to help clean up the messes in Martha's.

  4. Barking at the waves! Love it, that's one way to make them go away! Love these stories of your traveling with Clancy

  5. How fun to meet Clancy! Samson says he agrees, he does not like the high waves nor the sand that gets in his fur. It looks like you had a wonderful time in a very special place.

  6. I so enjoyed this post and the pics! And I love the image of Clancy barking at the waves and showing them who's boss. :)

  7. Great photos! The oceanfront looks like the one we enjoy on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina. You'll have to take Clancy there for a romp along the water's edge!

    Mary Montague Sikes

  8. I love the upper east coast of the US and planned to move there after college. I got diverted to the west coast, though.

    A great photo study of the places you love, Julie, and I can see why. I like being near a water source, I find it calming and the east coast ocean smells more salty to me. I used to say 'I could smell the ocean' (the saltwater tang) when I lived on the east coast.

  9. Just wonderful! The pictures are terrific and it is always good to see Clancy again :) xx

  10. An awesome trip for you both! Clancy is quite photogenic!

    He traveled 900 miles? Good dog!

  11. Love those photos. I've never been to Martha's Vineyard, but always wanted to visit it. And what a good dog Clancy is!!

  12. Tell Clancy if he doesn't like those waves, I'll be happy to go in his place next time. I so miss the ocean.

  13. beautiful photos! I've heard so many good things about Martha's Vineyard too:)

  14. Beautiful. I would love to have a vacation there too. Do you think Clancy would mind sharing some more company?!

  15. What lovely photos Julie! How funny with Clancy and waves. I love his body language even with the little waves. I miss the ocean. :-)


  16. @Carol, I thought of you when posting the Coast Guard pic!

    @Lexa, I am going to remember your 110 when I start to whine about the 90 degree temps here. I am dying for an ocean breeze too!

    @Michael, LOL, one thing is sure, I could never afford one of those boats myself. I am always envious!

    @LynnMarie, he was so annoyed that his ferocious barks had no effect on the water LOL.

    @Inger, we really did. I think Samson and Clancy would get along just fine. :)

    @Madeline, LOL, I wish so much I would have been able to get a video of it. He was really fierce.

    @Mary, oh, I've never been to Hilton Head but have always heard great things. Some day!

    @DG oh I totally agree about the smell! That's one of my favorite things about driving to the coast, I get so excited when we get close enough to smell the sea. :)

    @Carolyn, thanks!

    @Susan, he really was! He was happy as a clam in the van, I think he could have gone all the way to the West Coast and still been happy.

    @Johanna, thanks! And he really was, I was actually surprised LOL.

    @LD, I do too even though I just got back. I will let him know LOL.

    @Nutschell, thanks!

    @Christine, I think we could talk him into it LOL. :)

    @Sia, thanks so much. He totally cracked me up with the water.

  17. Sounds like you and Clancy had a lot of fun. Thanks for sharing all these photos.

  18. Oh, it looks lovely! I've never been there, but lucky you. Our poor dogs love going in the car. Unfortunately, it's usually only to the vet. Soon, when they get out here to San Diego, I'll take them to dog beach. Our little fat black dog (Koko) absolutely loves to swim!

  19. Great pictures. I love the one of the cliffs and the other with the boats. It's a different world to me. I've never been to New England before (except New Jersey for about two days inside a conference room), but I'd love to visit and explore.

  20. @Sheena, we really did, thanks.

    @Gwen, LOL, Koko sounds so cute! And I'm jealous of you living in San Diego.

    @LG, thanks! I'd still like to explore the areas of New England I've never been to, we've always spent our time in Massachusetts and Connecticut. I'd love to go to Maine someday.

  21. Julie,

    I love Clancy. Such a beautiful dog. I love your pics to of Martha's Vineyard. What a nice place. Incredibly beautiful.

  22. Beautiful pictures! It sounds like Clancy and you had a fantastic time!

  23. Clancy's adorable! And such beautiful pictures. I'd love to visit Martha's Vineyard some day. I've done my fair share of swimming in the ocean over the past week. vacations are wonderful, but it also feels good to get home.

  24. Great pictures. And Clancy looks so happy!

  25. I'm jealous. I spent many summers in Cape Cod as a kid. I loved it and have many fine memories.

  26. I would love to go there someday. It looks beautiful and peaceful. What a great place to write!

  27. Clancy is adorable! And that is another dream destination for me!

  28. What a super duper place to enjoy life. I hope y'all got to eat a lot of that fresh seafood.

    Too funny about Clancy barking at the waves. Almost as funny as a dog friends of our used to have. They'd say, "Look! A Republican!" and the dog would go absolutely NUTS barking.

  29. Totally wish I was there!


  30. Such gorgeous photos.. the place looks wonderful.

  31. Sounds like you had a wonderful trip, and I love how Clancy's smiling in the photos! Beautiful pictures, and this looks like an ideal setting for your new novel!


  32. Aw, Clancy is adorable! Like him, my own dog absolutely loves car rides. She's pretty much in heaven the rare times we're on a road trip!

  33. @Mary, thanks so much. And Clancy says thanks too! :)

    @Cherie, we really did, thanks.

    @Michael, it does, although I always wish the vacation could last a little longer LOL. Hope you had a great one too!

    @Annalisa, he was for the most part, nothing makes him happier than a car ride LOL.

    @Mary, I bet, I think the Cape is gorgeous too.

    @Dana, it's funny I never thought about writing about the island before but once I started I couldn't stop LOL.

    @Regina, thanks!

    @Susan, I've never known a politically active dog LOL, how funny.

    @Donna, I wish I was back there now LOL.

    @tf, it really is, thanks.

    @Julie, thanks so much, we really did have a fantastic time.

    @Heather, your dog and Clancy would get along fine then. I think it's so funny how some dogs are so obsessed with riding in the car LOL.

  34. Thanks for sharing these lovely photos of Martha's Vineyard. I did a close study for Nantucket for a novel I'm working on and am fascinated by these holiday destinations. I love taking my dog on holidays too,though this is not always possible.
    Just read a lovely romance: Love in Martha's Vineyard,part of a Love in...series. Wonderful.These sort of books I read for the place as I love to travel.

  35. Can we interview Clancy? Does our Mummsy have your email? Here's Mummy's
    Send Mummsy an email and we'll send interview questions for Clancy.

    Lots of Licks,
    Sir Poops and Hair Ball

  36. It looks like Clancy is a great traveling companion. Those pictures are gorgeous. I want to just jump into one of them and get lost for awhile. :)

  37. I lived many years on the east coast but never visited Martha's Vineyard. Looks lovely and Clancy is such a cutie! Thanks for sharing your pics. Wish we had some of that sun! (:

  38. Wow!! Such beautiful pictures, Julie! And Clancy looks like having fun too. I would have liked to be standing in that beach. I need a vacation. Dragon hugs!

  39. @Denise, oh, I'll have to look that book up, I hadn't heard of it. I've been to Nantucket one time, that sounds like a great setting for your novel.

    @shelly, Clancy would love that! I will interview you, thanks. :)

    @Ciara, thanks! I wish I could jump in one, wouldn't that be nice?

    @Elise, thank you! We got really lucky with the sun as it was gorgeous but still cool, perfect weather to me.

    @Al, thanks and dragon hugs back to you! :)

  40. Hi Julie .. loved seeing the photos and so pleased you were able to take Clancy with you - King Canute Clancy?!

    What fun .. and fabulous you have a family place there to go back and can 'base' into for a break ..

    I'd love to visit sometime .. looks gorgeous .. cheers Hilary

  41. Oh, wow. You had such an amazing vaction! Waving at Clancy!

  42. @Hilary, LOL, Clancy loves your name for him.

    @Ellie, we really did, thanks. Clancy is waving back. :)

  43. I can tell you had a great time and that you love your vacation spot. It's wonderful to not only hear about what you did, but to be able to see some of the places as well.

  44. Sounds like a wonderful time you had. I also love the sounds of waves crashing, and had written a poem about it - one of my favorites. My old dog Wrecks, (whom I had to give away when I moved last) LOVED the water, swimming and diving into it. I don't know how he'd do with big waves, though I think he'd brave them a bit.

    It seems everyone's taking a vacation, and boy, I just keep dreaming! Writer’s Mark

  45. Just looking at your pictures was like a lovely beach respite. Thank you for sharing and enjoy your trip and kiss your doggy's nose for me!

  46. What a wonderful trip! The photos are great.

  47. What a nice and beautiful vacation spot and Clancy looked like he was loving it. Hope you had a good time!

  48. @JL, I really do love it, thanks so much.

    @Nancy, oh, I bet Wrecks was fun to watch in the water. I'd love to read that poem of yours too, I'm so in love with the ocean.

    @Julie, I gave him a kiss and he sends kisses back to you! :)

    @Patricia, thanks!

    @Cathrina, we did, thanks so much.

  49. Thanks for sharing these beautiful pictures, Julie and for telling us more about Clancy. He smiles even when he doesn' t like the waves!
    Happy weekend.

  50. What a beautiful spot to spend time! I loved the pictures you shared.

    I've left you a little something at The Write Game today. It's yours if you'd like to pick it up. :-)

  51. That's amazing that Clancy enjoys a 900 mile ride. What a great and beautiful getaway for the two of you, Julie.


  52. What a lovely place, no wonder, Clancy loves it!

  53. @Deanie, thanks so much, and happy weekend to you as well.

    @Lee, oh, thanks, I will be over to get it!

    @Robyn, it was, thanks so much.

    @Glynis, I agree! :)

  54. Menemsha looks like such a cool village! Quaint, charming, peaceful... far from the madding crowd...
    Such wonderful photos!

    Writer In Transit

  55. oh my goodness, how beautiful! ;)

  56. Great photos! Lived in Feeding Hills for a while, but never made it to the Vineyard.

  57. @michelle, that's exactly how it is! I just love it.

    @SK, it really is a gorgeous island.

    @Milo, oh, I don't know Feeding Hills, but I just love New England in general.

  58. wow it would be great to have relatives somewhere like this - looks very tranquil :)

  59. @David, it really is. I only wish I lived a little closer, I'd love to be able to go more often. :)


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