Book shopping and vacationing on Cape Cod don't necessarily mix, because there are quaint book shops everywhere demanding to be browsed. Too much book shopping followed by subsequent reading can cause one to miss hiking through amazing scenery like the Provincetown dunes on the Cape Cod National Seashore (pictured above, where we are being led by my daughter, Cynthia.)
With this in mind, Denise and I planned our book shopping during the rainy and cold part of the week as we visited bookshops in Provincetown, Wellfleet, Chatham, East Sandwich, and Brewster. Shown here, clockwise from the upper left are: Tim's Used Books in Provincetown, R.M. Titcomb Book Seller in East Sandwich, Herridge Books in Wellfleet, and Provincetown Books in Provincetown. (Note the general overcast tone of the photos.)
At Herridge's checkout, I mentioned how much I liked the W flag outside the door, and the clerk said, "You must be a Cubs fan", but she quickly set me straight that the flag meant "W for Wellfleet" instead of "W for a Cub win." As a vexillophile, I wanted to take umbrage of the misappropriation of a flag's primary purpose as a symbol, but since Denise had found a copy of her long-sought Compass Rose (2010) by John Casey, the sequel to Spartina (1989), I let it pass.
Book shopping also included the quaint Cap Cod Canal Visitor Center, where I purchased Dava Sobel's Longitude (1995), which tells the 18th century story of how European scientists, mathematicians and astronomers, and finally a skilled and indefatigable carpenter solved the riddle of measuring longitude. Being able to navigate accurately was of paramount importance, and the historical and naval aspects of the book seem to fit my time near the ocean.
Note (once again) the gray sky in the picture of the visitor center below. I am not complaining, though. Cape Cod provides a great mix of all the leisure activities I like, indoors or out: hiking, eating, napping and browsing. Sounds like an idea for a Cape Cod-themed flag.