Summer on Cape Cod crawls to a close throughout August. The grid locks become less of a problem, unless you're trying to leave on sunday! This year we have the added excitement of a hurricane named Earl barreling up the Atlantic seaboard with an eye on the Cape and Islands. Yes, I meant "eye." We keep a small 18' wooden sailboat on the tidal flats near our home. The last storm beat her up a little bit, and that was just a Nor'easter that blew through last week. I had to re-float "El Viento" twice during that four day event. This time I thought it best to take her out and bring her home before the storm. Yesterday, tuesday, my oldest son and I sailed the two miles east to Rock Harbor. It was a blistering hot day, and I was fortunant to have Charlie home for a few days before college started; he could help! There wasn't a whisper of air when we arrived at the beach and I was resigned to rowing "El Viento" to safety. We rasied the sails anyway, and being the light wind witch she is, we started sailing. Sailing for about 300 yards before the wind ran out. I unlashed the 9' oars and commenced rowing east. After about a half mile I decided to take a breather and have a beer. A delightful breeze kicked up, coming from the south. Not a stout breeze but enough for us to move right along at maybe 3-4 knots. We sailed down the channel to the harbor, passing the famous "Clam Tree's" of Rock Harobor. Each year the harbormaster has around 8 little saplings set in the flats at low tide to mark the channel. Rock Harbor can only be traversed by te commercial fishermen 2 hours either side of high tide. The clam tree's help identify the meager channel available. One amusement are the metal signs attached to the clam tree's to act as radar reflectors for the boats coming in the fog or after dark. The town dpw supplies old signs, so we saw "Bicycles, Single File" and "End of Public Way", a STOP sign, and my favorite "No loitering, Police Take Notice." So now the boat is safe at home, hiding behind the office waiting to be re-launched Sunday. Our summer doesn't end until the end of September and we have some fine sailing to enjoy, and slightly less crowded road to deal with.