Those Aren’t Whales

You know that woman who is running around and frantically screaming her kid’s name? That was me.

We went to the Cahoon Hollow beach on the way out of Cape Cod.

The small dirt parking area and port-o-potties were at the edge of a drop-off, with a steep walk down to a well-populated beach.


We were going to leave the area earlier but the sun broke through for the first time so we thought we’d take advantage of the warmth.

Oh the irony, the only hot and sunny day we have and the boys refuse to go in the very same Atlantic ocean they couldn’t get enough of when it was cold and overcast.

Not going in the water.

Not going in the water.

Loony tried his best to force the boys to have a good time.

This didn't work out.

This didn’t work out.

After an inordinate amount of crying and whining about how cold the shark-infested waters were, Testiclese announced that he had to pee.



I pointed him at the path, making sure to orient him so he could find his way back (close to the lifeguard tower) and watched him ascend the path.

Just look for grandma.

Just look for grandma.

Loony kept an eye on the path for his return but after a few minutes I thought I should check on him. He wasn’t in any of the three port-o-potties.

I went to the edge and jumped up and down and waved until I caught Loony’s eye and mimed that I couldn’t find Testy.

Loony ran up to meet me and we started combing the area. He insisted that he didn’t take his eyes off the path and there was no way Testy was on the beach. I scanned the beach for his blue swim shirt and came up empty.

At this point I was trying to soothe myself with statistics about how unlikely it would be for him to be abducted.

I know he couldn’t have gone in the water because we couldn’t force him to go in earlier, but I could feel my chest closing up.


This was a bad time to have a panic attack (I had one once when he was a toddler and I couldn’t find him) so I was trying hard to not get hysterical.

The parking attendant walkie-talkied the lifeguards and one met me on my way back to the beach. He drove me up and down the beach on his ATV and I could see the look of worry in the eyes of everyone I passed.

We finally found him, lost and confused, but not far from where we were camped out on the beach.

I knew that he was scared and confused. He didn’t wander off to freak me out, he simply couldn’t find me and I didn’t want to compound his fear with my parental terror. My urge was to shake him by the shoulders and yell, “DON’T YOU EVER DO THAT AGAIN!”

But I didn’t, a rare parenting win.

Instead I held him as tightly as I could and kissed him over and over again.

Don't let go.

Don’t let go.

We packed up shortly thereafter and had lunch at the top of the dunes.

Not the best, but I'm still not sick of lobster.

Not the best, but I’m still not sick of lobster.

Now we’re off to Maine and I mean it.

Stay away ladies, that's MY man.

Stay away ladies, that’s MY man, shorts with socks and everything.

On an unrelated note, I’d like a little clarification. I thought P-Town was Providence, Rhode Island. Are there two P-Towns? What do they call Providence, RI? I’m so confused. Are they both LGBT meccas? Why do so many places on the east coast have the same name?

I guess there is a strong LGBT scene here.

I guess there is a strong LGBT scene here.

And Jefé, I see what you mean about the lifeguards. They are really, um, in shape, nothing like our crazy housemate.

18 thoughts on “Those Aren’t Whales

  1. I can’t think of anything fun to say here since I had the same experience once with the god child. I couldn’t speak for a week bc as a non mom I didn’t realize the statistic was low.. yikes! Scary! Um maybe you should have told them about the sharks later. You know. When you were in Maine.. oh and as an aside. If you want to do the LGBT thing, next year you have to pack em up and head to they Florida Keys. And the bonus is there the water is so clear you can see the sharks circling you. 😉

    • Thankfully I didn’t know about the shark thing until after we were on the road. Yes, the abduction rates are very low, as low or lower than when we were children. The media plays it up for ratings and leads us to believe that our children are always in danger of being abducted. It leads to terribly overly sheltered children. I’m a big fan of It’s how i was raised and look at me! Har.

        • Yep, the kids didn’t want to go in the water because it was cold. The same water they were playing in with delighted for the last two days when it was colder out. Kids are inscrutable. Even though the odds of getting attacked by a shark are even lower than getting abducted by a stranger, I’m c.r.a.z.y scared of them. I blame Jaws.

          The Blue Dog doesn’t free range. There’s way too much possibility for the wheels to come off. He likes my casual amble anyway.

  2. So I am sitting at work in Providence, RI right now reading your blog. I find them funny and though provoking, btw. I started reading after hearing about it in the little Readers’ Digest article and began my own journey to cut the crap.

    Anyway, We are very much different then P-town (Cape Cod, Massachusetts) First we are in a different state (yes Rhode Island is a state, one of the 13 original colonies) and NOT part of New York (that’s LONG ISLAND). People from out of New England (made up of Vermont, New Hampshire, RI, Massachusetts and Maine) make that mistake all.the.time! A bit of Trivia…we are the smallest state with the longest name, officially called, The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations. Betcha didn’t know that! Providence doesn’t have a nickname. We are just Providence. Sometimes people refer to it as ‘the city’, but that’s not really a nickname. It takes about 2 – 2 1/2 hours to drive from Providence to Provincetown.

    On another note, I once lost my daughter in Disney…scariest 3 minutes of my life…felt like 3 hours!!

    • Oh my god. It sucked. Working hard on my lobster challenge. I have come to the conclusion that the rolls are the best. Wrestling a whole lobster just slows me down too much.

    • And those socks! He is going all the way with this look. A friend once ver aptly observed that Loony takes dorkiness so far that it becomes cool and almost comes back around to dorkiness. That’s my man.

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