Background of the OLYC B&B and Resort and The Otter Bees

We returned to this city in 2001. We had lived here while our children were growing up but a job transfer took us to Florida and then retirement took us to Cape Cod. The house on the Cape had everything we liked. We had a home on the water, a quilting group and a boat to race in the summer. It was perfect until the taxes began to rise and rise…. and rise. It was time to move.

We searched for houses in our former hometown in the west with the idea we would be nearer to some of our grown kids.  As we searched the internet, we kept returning to the same site. We began to call it “our house”. Finally the decision was made. A trip to the west assured us that a return to our old home city would be a good move and the sale of the house on the Cape was resolved. We moved in 2001 to the town where our children grew up and two of them still lived.

The house was in a part of town that was new to us. In our previous life, we lived on the bay with salt water at the front of our land with a view of “Dot Island” and beautiful sunsets everyday.   This new home is on a lake where the sunsets are blocked by a hillside.  But there is a dock and it has been perfect for a sail boat, a kayak for the kids, a small motor boat to travel the lake and the canoe we brought with us. We have had
boats all the time we have been married; “messing around in boats” will be a part of
our lives forever.

Soon after we moved in to the house, we looked out on the dock to see an otter sleeping at its end.  Aha… we must live at “Otter Landing”. My husband read The Wind in the Willows to the kids when they were young. He yawned and nearly went to sleep as he read but they listened and remembered. When we bought a boat and named  it “Mr Toad” the kids knew where the name came from. Another wooden motor boat became “The Otter”. Why not, it was docked at Otter Landing.  Our sail boat is “Puffin”.

Our son has the sailing bug. With an available dock, he was sure he needed to put a sailboat there and find friends who would race with him. It has been ten years and there are 10 boats on the dock. So Otter Landing Yacht Club was born. Races occur every Thursday in the summer and occasionally on  a weekend. Racers from Oregon have joined us on several occasions. The otters have given up. They aren’t coming any more. Anyone else who wants to race with our son will have to buy a house, or talk a neighbor into letting them have dock space. We have reached our limit and have shored up the docks as much as we can.

Then there is my quilting group that meets on Wednesdays. They come every week to quilt, or knit and mainly to talk. We call ourselves the “Otter Bees”. Some say they “otter be” cleaning, or cooking or shopping. But they come faithfully and put off those things they “otter be” doing.

My husband and I sometimes host company.  Since cooking is one of my least favorite things to do, along with the dishes and cleaning, I tell the company they are on their own for breakfast – most meals at this place tend to be YOYO, “you’re on your own” but we still consider ourselves the Otter Landing Bed and Breakfast for our guests.  We recently housed all the family for a wedding event and decided we’d become elevated to “resort” status because there were so many things to enjoy –  the lake, the sun, the swimming… but everyone had to cook their own meals.

What next… who knows. Maybe the otters will return some winter when the boats have been put away and we are just enjoying the view across the lake.


3 Responses to About

  1. Susan Thurston says:

    Hello, I was researching some silhouette cards by your Grandmother Lucy Gibbons Morse that I found in my Aunt Jane Kenworthy’s house. She used to be great friends with Marge Morse from Cotuit. They traveled on the the United States Field Hockey team to British Guiana. When we were growing up we used to call Miss Morse, Aunt Peanuts. I believe she was related to Lucy Morse. I love the silhouettes and was fascinated by the scrapbooks on your blog. Google brought me to your website.
    Is it possible that Lucy was related to Marge Morse?

    Kind regards
    Susan Thurston (Jane Kenworthy’s Niece)

    • otterlanding says:

      @ Susan: Lucy Gibbons is the grandmother of Aunt Peanut…Marge Morse and I remember Ken visiting us in Cotuit and all the fun we had with watermelon fights. I wrote about the fights in March 2011.

  2. Peter Basta Brightbill says:

    Hello. I am a lawyer in New York who is active in an effort to get your great-great-grandmother’s house in Manhattan preserved as a memorial to Abby Hopper Gibbons and her family and the great work that she did as an abolitionist. I have been to Swarthmore college and have read both Abby’s correspondence and that of your great-grandmother, Lucy Gibbons Morse. I would very much like to speak with you about your incredible family. Peter Basta Brightbill, New York, NY.

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