Hate to let you down, but things didn’t get too crazy once Maureen and Anna arrived. There was still plenty of pajama lounging, reading, and meals around the whitewashed table (Ok, I don’t really know if it was technically whitewashed or if whitewash is different from plain old white paint, but it does look like a table that Tom Sawyer would’ve painted.)
Credit to Aunt Mary Beth for having the foresight to bring a jug of Vermont maple syrup. The minute Anna curled up in the windowsill she declared the 12-hour bus ride completely worth it. All our childhood we have yearned for a windowsill seat. All week we had held off on a boat ride so that Maureen and Anna could join us. Sadly, the lobster boat rides weren’t running off-season, but we still enjoyed a ride on the mail boat. It takes people, dogs and goods from the main island to a remote little island called Isle Au hHaut. A few people actually live on the island, though you have to take a 40-minute boat ride to access it. A fine place to live if Ebola makes its way to Maine. Once we arrived on the island we only had time for a brief stroll before the boat turned around. Happy to be back on our island. Dad in Mom’s hat and Mom in Mom’s hat. He loves to wear her accessories. To be fair, he doesn’t wear her necklaces or bracelets—he just has a hard time telling the difference between things like women’s and men’s socks. He’s very progressive like that. In this gender fluid world, he doesn’t see gender!Fun fact: We had lunch in the cafe that used to be Uncle Jerry’s office when he was the island doctor. I love NYC restaurants, but I also love a place where you can get a $3 grilled cheese and chips.
And I love a place where the people dining next to you feel comfortable enough to lean over and ask which dessert you’re eating. “Blueberry pie and raspberry bread pudding! Oh, and get the seafood chowder.”Can you guess which boat I’d row to school if I grew up here? After lunch, Dad had coffee here. If Dad was ever missing you can bet you’d find him here—reading at this hotel’s coffee shop and watching the lobstermen pack their loot into big trucks. In Maine, Dad also discovered “women’s magazines” and became hooked. Next time you see him reading the Wall Street Journal, there’s likely a Vogue hiding behind it. No really, he became obsessed with October’s Vogue and kept exclaiming how good the articles were. Whenever we’d arrive home, Mom would usually put the pot on and we’d enjoy a cuppa on the porch. So scenic I couldn’t even keep my eyes open.If you can believe it, Anna was a bit hesitant at first to go to Maine because she couldn’t get much time off from work. All I had to say was, “But Anna, just think, you can wear cozy sweaters and your cute new rain boots!” She was immediately sold. Well, it turns out she forgot those rain boots and then packed one boot from two different sets of boots … leaving her with no boots. She didn’t let anyone mention boots for the rest of the trip. Still, she had her sweaters!Each morning Mom alternated between making pancakes and french toast. We headed back to the Deer Isle High School with the whole group this time. Though it’s no longer a school, one of the former teacher’s daughter has turned it into a coffee shop. The first time we tried to go, it was closed. The lights were off and there was nobody inside, yet the door was unlocked. We peeked our head into the empty shop which had a wooden box stuffed with money next to a basket of garlic for sale. Turns out many Maine shops don’t lock their doors at night. You gotta love a community that puts so much, well trust, into the trust system. Side note: It seemed like every other house on the island was for sale. Go get your house now, people. (Dog probably not included). We took our cups of coffee outside and discovered this pond behind a beautiful red inn. Not to be mistaken for the Red Roof Inn. Family photo shoot.
Hi Mary Beth!
For that, we headed back to Nervous Nellies. Many places in Maine have a little shop cat. Nervous Nellies had this fluffy dog who looks sad because he was very old and had some sort of hip injury/arthritis judging from his lopsided gait. Made him even cuter. We explored some more areas, now that everything was open. Anna and Mary Beth got into a competitive checkers game at Red’s. Tumbling out of the saloon …
And behind bars … Taking his yearly bath.
Afterwards, we picked up our walking sticks and went on a “scenic walk.” Anna didn’t like the idea of a “nature walk.”
Anna’s one goal was to see a Moose on her first trip to Maine. Sadly, this forest did not have a Moose. Or it was just hiding really well. As we marched I sang, “I got me ten fine toes …” from the Father Goose opening scene. (Watch it—so catchy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-F3vSrJIUQ) Mom started singing it earlier in the week and I was immediately hooked.
Much to the annoyance of everyone else, I just could not stop singing it: in the grocery store, while washing the dishes, on strolls to town. When you’re on vacation in Maine, with no responsibilities to fill your head or worries greater than what to eat for dinner, you just wanna sing a carefree song in a fake British accent. Carefully maintaining a safe distance from those dangerous kayaks. “I love Maine thisss much!” And because I’ve poked too much fun at his masculinity, here are some masculine shots of dad. On our last evening in Maine, we headed to the Opera House which was showing a documentary of a local artist who died of ALS. Not the most cheery way to end the week, but we’d met his wife in her gallery earlier in the week. Then later we walked past her with her easel set up on the side of the highway as she painted the ocean.
Bright and early Monday morning we hopped into the car and headed back to Boston, and then dispersed to our respective NYC and Chicago homes.
It’s no wonder Maine is called “vacationland.” We’ll be back soon, Maine!