Category Archives: Brant Point

#625: One Direction concert

It’s not like the Allman Brothers concert I went to in college.
Oh no, this was a once-in-a-lifetime event.
First of all, my teen has a summer job, with tips.
Lots of tips. so she could afford to help with expenses.
Tickets were $102. Which, if you know me, is ridiculous.
That’s why she helped.

Plus, we live on an island
and have the additional expense of taking a boat or plane to America.
That’s my beloved at Brant Point seeing us off.

And my youngest in bliss just to be at the venue, Gillette Stadium.

As were these matching girls.

and a few guys, dads?, wearing sunglasses.

We drove a rental car. Most folk drove their own 
(it doesn’t cost them hundreds of extra dollars to bring it over on a ferry)
Properly decorated and equipped with a grill and picnic fixings.
There was a lot of off-key singing and sign-painting.

‘Sorry, Niall, my dad says I’m too young to date.’

Where We Are Tour, homemade t-shirts.
So much creativity!
Here come the fans, 68 thousand altogether,
across Route 1 from the parking lot.
The police and volunteers were highly organized.
Heading in. She ran all the way up the wrong ramp
and was so excited she didn’t even mind.
Her cousin, Emily, was stuck in traffic and didn’t get to the stadium
for another half-hour but the warm-up band was still playing.
She texted us when she found her seat.
How did we know when One Direction came on?
The roar. I didn’t even know girls could make that noise.
I sat with Emily’s mom here, outside the park.
We could hear just fine.
The band comes onstage at 2:12.
You’ll be able to tell.
It was worship, pure and simple.
Every girl there was 100% in the moment:
singing along, screaming, dancing, waving their iPhone.
Nothing else mattered, just the band.
It’s one of the things that I love about teens:
their absolute capacity for devotion.
When a teen goes after what they want,
they do so whole-heartedly.
I pray my own–all six–would love Jesus
the way these kids love One Direction.
That’s where the forever joy lies.
We went out for ice cream after the concert,
letting the traffic clear a bit.
We got to bed around 3 am (I got lost) then
back to Nantucket the next morning
after a potentially hellacious 4 hour stuck-in-traffic
car ride back to Hyannis.
Only potentially because of the 2 sweet girls
riding with me,
singing One Direction songs.
The music never ends.

#608: Boston Marathon redux

Last year’s Boston Marathon ended in tragedy.
David was stopped a half hour out,
this year he was determined to run it again.
Training all winter (in spite of weird weather)
a half-marathon in New York and a prep race
with the Liver Foundation made him ready.

Easter Sunday, the day before the race,
is a busy day in our house.
Up at dawn for the Sunrise service at the Old Mill.

Then a long walk to Abram’s Point

Then worship in our renovated sanctuary.
Christ the Lord is Risen Today, Alleluia!
After worship I dropped David at the Hy-line fast ferry.
There’s an island tradition of waving to family and friends
from Brant Point, so I headed over.

And found two of my kids painting!

They found the cardboard outside the church,
and got some poster paint from the Sunday school closet.

A thrilling send-off.

There he is! Good thing David wore
a red coat and orange hat.

Go Dad!
And go he did,
I just got the call, he finished the Boston Marathon
in 5:10:02.
The hard events of the race last year were not the last thing.
This year, the finish line!

#569: Fishing at Brant Point

Early morning, before the island wakes,
 Brant Point fishing can be magical.
A father and son hop in their kayak,
headed to Coatue to go clamming.
Some fishermen already leaving 
when we arrived, there’s always an earlier bird.
Still waters, quiet minds.
A boat or two glides by,
not busy like in August but friendly–
David usually knows the folk on these boats.

Sailing beauties sleep
Pan-fired scup for breakfast?
That’s reason enough for early morning fishing.
Evidence of a good catch,
a bluefish rack left for the seagulls.

Or, in a different light:
a mermaid sits and sings
 on the rocks of the Brant Point lighthouse.
Like I said, magical.

#565: See ya later, alligator!

The annual Labor Day picnic
at Brant Point.
A few of us show up to wave good-bye
to the last Steamship Authority
 slow boat of Labor Day.
Marking the end of summer
on a high note.
Flag waving is a must.

We pretty much wave at everything.
Some folk tried a little fishing while waiting for the boat,
we didn’t catch anything but there was a 30″ striper caught
while we were there.

Here she comes!
The kids hold signs and flags,
Champagne duty belongs to an adult.

Smile and wave!
Much hooting and hollering!

The picnic retired to our house as it began to rain.
A good time was had by all and we’ll…
See you next summer!

#441: Big Ocean, Little Boat

The Ruthie B dragger is 77 feet long.
That’s big in my book.
She’s a whole world in herself.
Tied up at the town dock.

The nets.
The net repair kit.

Looking down into the hold.
There’s lots of ice and fish down there!
Also lobster.
An immensely popular item at our fish market.
Thanks, Captain Bill.

The dining room.
Note the condiments safely held in place.
The seas are not always smooth.

A door that can keep out the sea.
His t-shirt says ‘Pain is good.’

Captain Bill Blount weighing up a catch.
Brant Point lighthouse is pretty but…
A well-worn box
and a bit of hand-repaired net
has a beauty that touches the soul.

#417: A Child’s Nantucket Summer

Sadly, this guy only gets to come for short visits.
We hope he’ll be able to stay longer when he’s older.
Also, his folks don’t want his recognisable picture
on the internet so you don’t get to see
how cute he is.
You can see me, tho’.
He had lots of fun with my camera.
And with his Grandpa.
Catching scup at Brant Point.
An entire day was spent reading stories
with his dad off and on in the tent.
He pounded the stakes all-the-way-down.

Another day for surfing practice.
A boogie board is too flexible for surfing.
Many hilarious shots of him falling off,
but he always got right back on.

Burning off energy jumping.
Kids on the autism spectrum 
have lots and lots of energy.

And lots of curiosity.
A Maria Mitchell Association intern
teaching him how to measure flounder.  

And lots of imagination.
Mommy and Gabe as spies.
Cool mustaches, hmmm?
We miss you, Gabe, come back soon.

#408: Brant Point Fishermen

First, you take one adorable grandchild.
Get up at his normal rising time
(the crack of dawn),
grab the rods, bait, and bucket. 
And catch some scup at Brant Point.
That takes care of supper.
But what about breakfast?

A quick stop at the Downyflake for donuts.
All set.

Sometime in the afternoon,
go out in the garden and pick peas, swiss chard,
squash, broccoli seed pods…
whatever looks interesting.
Add to garlic and olive oil,
stir fry.
To prepare scup:
Let Grandpa scale, gut, fillet your fish.
Bury the heads in the garden for fertilizer.

Dip fillets in milk, then cornmeal.
Deep fry.


#220: Labor Day Farewell Picnic

Every year on Labor Day our family and friends go 
to Brant Point for a picnic.
The rose hips are nearly ready for jelly-making.
We pack an awesome meal
(ie: shrimp, homegrown potato salad, our own carrots,
and pickles and sun tea, and
Ghiradelli brownies for dessert)
then skip some rocks as we wait for the 
Last Labor Day slow boat.
When we hear the old Nobska whistle 
(Click to hear it) we get ready:
Then we wave like mad and shout good-bye as the boat passes:
 A joyful ending to another glorious summer.
See you in the Spring…