Our trip continues and we eventually reach Greenport, at the top end of the North Fork. From there we take the Ferry to Shelter Island. I look out across the water, see a yacht and am instantly reminded of my own sailing adventure a few weeks back. I contemplate how nice it would be to do a bit of sailing in this part of the world.
Jane tells me Shelter Island was named because it was used as a haven for boats during the hurricane season. It’s still a safe place during the stormy season, Jane’s friend had called only a few days ago to say they were moored there during a particularly rough night.
I was curious to see what this safe haven actually looked like.
We pull into the harbour. I see gorgeous old houses, with rolling lawns, jetties and imagine hot steamy summers, cicadas humming and iced teas taken on the back porch at sunset. It looks so peaceful…more sanctuary than shelter.
We drive into town and are taken aback by the old-fashioned charm of a place that still has a hardware store in the main street.
There are pretty little shops. This one had a mid-century modern chair that Christina Maxwell would most definitely approve of!
The streets are filled with picture postcard houses.
Jane and I start to think how nice it would be to own a place here. curious about what it would take, we check out houses at the local realtors only to discover that prices are way beyond us… perhaps the sanctuary of Shelter Island has already been discovered by people with deeper pockets than ours.
It was swelteringly hot and we both agreed an icy cold drink in a cool place would be a very good idea and something we could easily afford! So we drove to the other side of the Island.
Jane knew of a hip bar at the Sunset Beach Hotel.
We walk through the pretty foyer and up the stairs…
To the roof deck bar where we formally begin the book tour…well not really…the barmaid wanted to know why I was taking so many photo’s and I told her about the blog, the books and the road trip we were documenting. Her curiosity had been tweaked. I gave her a card and she promised to check out the site when she finished work. Spreading the word…!?
By late afternoon we were feeling a little peckish. Jane had something on the mainland in mind. The ferry was waiting, we showed our return pass, waved goodbye to Shelter Island and headed back to Greenport.
There was a sweet little pastry shop…
And bars and restaurants on Main Street but it just wasn’t what I felt like.
I follow Jane down a back alley.
Past the clapboard shack with the oyster shucking gloves.
And to the deck bar at the Blue Canoe.
I have a happy hour gin and tonic and we share a plate of the yummy local oysters…perfect!
We are not alone for long and start chatting to our neighbors. I am charmed buy the easy-going affability of these people. They too have fallen in love with the area and are about to buy a house on the North Fork. Somewhere to bring their family, a good distance from the intensity of New York City and only a 2 hour train ride away. Jane mentions that she’s been looking too and has seen a couple of places closer to home. I wonder whether my sister will have new neighbors one day?
It’s getting late, time to get back to Westhampton and time for Jane to relax… she’s been driving all day. We all swap contact details, promise to keep in touch and say our farewells.
On our way home we take a slight detour and Jane shows me this tiny fisherman’s shack that’s been converted into a cute little weekender. It’s right on the water and I can just imagine taking the kayak, checking out the coves and the grand old homes further along the coast.
Or perhaps we could spend lazy afternoons sipping Prosecco on the deck? But we both agreed this place was just a little bit too small…it only had one bedroom…nowhere for an itinerant sister to stay. Jane had one more place to checkout. The house needed some work but nothing my savvy sister couldn’t handle.
It was much bigger, two bedrooms and a shed that could easily be converted into guest quarters…just saying!?
We sat on the jetty, Jane rang the realtor. Unfortunately the house had been sold. We contemplated what could have been but then thought maybe it would be worth taking another look, at the end of Winter, when the market had cooled and the sellers would be keener to negotiate.
We drove home, convinced that the North Fork would be a magical place to live. Wineries, great food, pretty houses, quaint towns, quiet lakes, sandy beaches, friendly people…and a great place to escape a dreary Melbourne winter.
Cheers, Anna x
LOVE YOU TO READ MY BOOKS.
The Lost Woman series follows the sexy adventures of Christina as she makes her way through a world of new media, design, fashion, travel, and … men.
A perfect read for those of you looking for something after Fifty Shades of Grey.
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