Back to the Bastide – 2017, here we go!



Naive representation painted by Tilda, of Chatham.

A beautiful sight at Oysterpond, Cape Cod. Down the staircase he goes, back over the Atlantic and home!

Number 12 belongs to Quarterback legend Tom Brady – superhero of the Pats.

January means that it’s NFL Playoff time and those of us up here in New England follow the exploits and activities of the New England Patriots closely as they inch towards another Superbowl showdown.

The New England Patriots are a professional American football team based in the Greater Boston region. The Patriots compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member of the American Football Conference (AFC) East division. The team plays its home games at Gillette Stadium in the town of Foxborough, Massachusetts, which is located 21 miles (34 km) southwest of downtown Boston and 20 miles (32 km) northeast of downtown Providence, Rhode Island. The Patriots are also headquartered at Gillette Stadium.

An original member of the American Football League (AFL), the Patriots joined the NFL in the 1970 merger of the two leagues. The team changed its name from the original Boston Patriots after relocating to Foxborough in 1971. The Patriots played their home games at Foxboro Stadium from 1971 to 2001, then moved to Gillette Stadium at the start of the 2002 season. The Patriots’ rivalry with the New York Jets is considered one of the most bitter rivalries in the NFL.

The Patriots have appeared in the Super Bowl eight times in franchise history, six of them since the arrival of head coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady in 2000. The Patriots have since become one of the most successful teams in NFL history, winning 14 AFC East titles in 16 seasons since 2001, without a losing season in that period. The franchise has since set numerous notable records, including most wins in a ten-year period (126, in 2003–2012), an undefeated 16-game regular season in 2007, the longest winning streak consisting of regular season and playoff games in NFL history (a 21-game streak from October 2003 to October 2004), and the most consecutive division titles won by a team in NFL history (won eight straight division titles from 2009 to 2016). The team owns the record for most Super Bowls reached by a head coach-quarterback tandem (six), as well as being the first tandem to win the Super Bowl 13 years after the first.

Sunday 22nd January 2017 – another date with destiny – the Pats vs Pittsburgh Steelers for the right to play in the 2017 Super Bowl!

Spotted in the Chatham Squire Bar and Restaurant, Chatham. Note the reference to taking your clubs away!


We all know that craft beer consumption is on the up; artificial big brand beer is going down.

We visited a local Cape Cod brewery, Devil’s Purse to have our own look at what the fuss is all about.

The range – Growlers, Howlers, Crowlers. Each bottle/pack size has it’s own distinctive name.

Gleaming tanks in a highly sterile environment.

Devil’ Purse is predominantly a ‘tap’ venture.

Kegs and Logs – half size kegs, waiting to go out to the pubs and clubs.

Matt, co-founder and master brewer

For more information on Devil’s Purse, click here.

World Series and American Conference pennants line Yawkey Way.

Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox.

Yawkey Way is a short street in the city of Boston, Massachusetts. Located in Back Bay, it runs for two blocks from Brookline Avenue in the north to Boylston Street in the south, where it changes to Jersey Street. It used to be a continuation of Jersey Street, part of the Back Bay scheme of alphabetical streets. The street is named after Tom Yawkey, owner of the Boston Red Sox from 1933–1976.

4 Yawkey Way is famous as the address of Fenway Park, the Red Sox’s home stadium, and is closely identified with the park and the team. The park’s original address was 24 Jersey Street before it was renamed in Yawkey’s honor.

2016 – American East Conference Champions!


The Newport Mansions are one of the most popular tourist attractions in Rhode Island, with about 800,000 visitors a year.

Even people who don’t normally like “historic homes tours” love visiting the Newport Mansions!

The Breakers (pic above):
The Breakers is the largest and most popular of all the Newport Mansions, attracting nearly 350,000 visitors a year!

Built by the Vanderbilt family in 1895, this 70-room summer “cottage” was designed in the Italian Renaissance style. The home and grounds overlook Newport’s famous Cliff Walk.

Marble House (see above):
Marble House gets about 160,000 visitors each year, making it the second most popular mansion. Like The Breakers, it was built for the Vanderbilt family.

Inspired by a chateau on the grounds at Versailles, the home was built between 1888 and 1892 with 500,000 cubic feet of marble!

Although smaller than The Breakers, some consider Marble House more “opulent.”

The Chatham lighthouse – a sculpture outside the local Chatham Cape Cod 5 Bank.

Camden Harbour.

Camden is a town in Knox County, Maine, United States. The population was 4,850 at the 2010 census. The population of the town more than triples during the summer months, due to tourists and summer residents. Camden is a famous summer colony in the Mid-Coast region of Maine. Similar to Bar Harbor, Nantucket and North Haven, Camden is well known for its summer community of wealthy Northeasterners, mostly from Boston, New York and Philadelphia.

Camden’s many prominent summer and year-round residents have been a valuable resource to the town in many ways over the past 125 years, a tradition of partnership which continues today in many forms, not least by helping to establish some internationally renowned events, namely The Camden Conference and Pop!Tech. The Camden Conference has been held annually for nearly a quarter of a century to foster informed discourse on world issues. Convened in the historic Camden Opera House, the event draws some of the best minds on foreign policy to share their insights and expertise on a range of global issues. The Pop!Tech conference, which takes place each fall, gathers a global community of cutting-edge leaders, thinkers, and doers from many different disciplines to explore the social impact of new technologies, the forces of change shaping our future, and new approaches to solving the world’s most significant challenges.

Outside the LL Bean store – the iconic LLBean boot.

Any visitor to Maine, HAS to visit the LL Bean store in Freeport.

L.L.Bean, Inc.branded as L.L.Bean, is an American, privately held e-commerce, mail-order, and retail company founded in 1912 by Leon Leonwood Bean. The company is currently based in Freeport, Maine, United States. It specializes in clothing and outdoor recreation equipment. Its annual sales were USD $1.6 billion in 2015.

Part of the LL Bean parking lot when we were there.

The company began as a one-room operation selling a single product, the Maine Hunting Shoe (known currently as the L.L.Bean Boot). Bean had developed a waterproof boot, which is a combination of lightweight leather uppers and rubber bottoms, that he sold to hunters. He obtained a list of nonresident Maine hunting license holders, prepared a descriptive mail order circular, set up a shop in his brother’s basement in Freeport, Maine, and started a nationwide mail order business. By 1912, he was selling the “Bean Boot”, or Maine Hunting Shoe, through a four-page catalogue.

Along with a number of retail and outlet (“factory”) stores, the company maintains its flagship store on Main Street in Freeport. This branch, originally opened in 1917, has been open 24 hours a day since 1951, with the exception of two Sundays in 1962 when Maine changed its blue laws; a town vote reinstated the store’s open-door policy. The flagship also closed to honor the death of President Kennedy, as well as that of Bean himself, as well as his grandson Leon Gorman.

There are no locks on the doors to LLBean!

Nothing, not even a snow storm will prevent the LL Bean customers from getting to their favourite store.


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