Joyce and Millie aboard
Little Brother (far left).
Newport’s Trinity Church
(left), and Fort Adams
(above). Shucking oysters
in Matunuck (right).
between the fishing towns of Jerusalem and
Galilee, and end up at the Matunuck Oyster
Bar (Billy knows how to tempt me).
Jerusalem and Galilee? You might wonder where these names came from. In 1900,
the story goes, a fisherman came ashore in
the inlet near what’s now Snug Harbor and
decided this was a great place to tuck in.
He’d read biblical descriptions of Galilee
and decided this new land reminded him
of it. Another fisherman passed through the
inlet and asked what it was. He was told
“Galilee.” The newcomer pointed to the
other shore. The resident fisherman thought
for a moment and said, “That must be
Jerusalem.” The names stuck.
We opted to fight against the inertia that
occurs when the weather isn’t perfect, and
headed out. The 10 miles between Newport
and Point Judith promised to be pretty
uncomfortable as the wind blew against the
tide, but I’d suffer it for oysters. I’d been
reading about Perry Rasso’s restaurant at
the Matunuck Oyster Farm for years, but
the 45-minute drive from our house in
Portsmouth had proved to be unachievable.
Little Brother was well set up with electron-
ics, and the colorful plotter made the fog
seem less of an obstacle as we set our course
from buoy to buoy and then to the Point
Judith lighthouse. The ride was bouncy, but
I held onto our dog Millie, and when we
made the turn into the harbor, I felt accom-