Missing Mooring Mystery

Tuesday
August 23, 2016

The weather this morning was nice and cool with a light southwest breeze.  Patty and I had fruit for breakfast and then sat on the front porch reading.  Cyndy called to let us know the people that cut the mooring rope last week called the office to explain what happened, will return the bouy, and have offered to pay to have the rope replaced.  We were so happy to hear that.  I’m not totally sure of the details but apparently someone on their boat was sick and they could not get untied so the cut the rope, or something like that.  Just glad to know it will be fixed at no cost to F.O.S.I.L.S.

Sunrise this morning

Sunrise this morning

The ferry arrived late morning and we were busy with them and other guests for the next several hours.  From Ethan’s boat, the first two visitors were a mom and her 20ish son from Fort Hood, Oregon who raced up the hill first and beat all the others by a good ten minute or more.  By the time the next visitors got to the top, they had already toured the tower and were out hiking the North Trail.  They were also about the last to go down the hill to catch the ferry back and we got to chat with them for quite a while then.  We also had two other families, not with one another, made up of a mom, dad, and daughter that were coincidentally both from Connecticut but with cottages in Maine.  The mom in one of these families told us her brother is a lighthouse keeper at the Point Sur light in California.  The lighthouse there had a 1st Order Fresnel lens that was removed to a museum in Monterrey but it’s going to be restored to the lighthouse tower at Pt. Sur sometime in the near future.

Family visiting Seguin from Connecticut

Family visiting Seguin from Connecticut

We also had two large families, one of nine from Yonkers, NY and another of seven

Up the Lighthouse Trail empty handed.

Up the Lighthouse Trail empty handed.

partially from Henry Island, Washington and the rest from Massachusetts.  A local couple also came out and the husband told me that 50 years ago he and a friend tried to visit Seguin from Ocean Point in an open boat with just a 5hp engine only to realize part way over they didn’t have enough gas.  To conserve gas for the way back, they decided to start rowing but the tide and current pushed them away from Seguin and they never made it.  It took him 50 years to finally get out here and he was super excited to see the light up close.

After Ethan’s visitors started down the hill, Patty and I took a break for lunch and had some pasta that Patty cooked this morning with homemade sauce we had in the freezer.  Shortly after eating, six kayakers who paddled over from Reid State Park arrived including one that is a friend of Julie’s and was just out here a few days ago.

Sailboat of family that visiting this afternoon. They're heading back to their home on Chebeague Island in the Casco Bay.

Sailboat of family that visiting this afternoon. They’re heading back to their home on Chebeague Island in the Casco Bay.

A family of five was our last group of visitors of the afternoon.  They arrived in a nice catamaran sailboat on their way back to Chebeague Island in the Casco Bay where they live year-round.  They were a super nice, interesting couple and their three young children were really well behaved and nice also.  They were asking about our lifestyle on

Black bean nachos.

Black bean nachos.

Seguin and we asked a lot of questions about living on Chebeague and on their boat.  They’ve been away from home all summer on the sailboat and also

Dinner snack

Dinner snack

working at a camp where she taught art.  She showed us some pictures of artwork on her phone that she’s done including one nice piece that LL Bean bought and used for the cover art on one of their recent catalogs.  We could have chatted with them even longer but winds, tides, and weather sometimes dictate when visitors have to leave as it did today so they left and I was able to get some pictures of them sailing past not long afterwards.

We took a few more things down the hill for our day off-island tomorrow and them relaxed for the rest of the afternoon and evening.  Patty made a platter of black bean nachos for a dinner snack which was plenty considering the big lunch of pasta we had in the afternoon.WP_20160823_19_28_54_Pro

Visitors – 37

Favorite Moment(s) – meeting and talking with family that lives on Chebeague.

Sunrise – 5:43am
Sunset – 7:21pm

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Vessel in Distress

Monday
August 22, 2016

It rained steadily overnight, heavily at times – when it woke me up around 2am, I thought about the leaky mess that might be happening in the kitchen and gift shop for a while until I finally got up.  Fortunately, both were mostly dry but I moved things the pantry shelves in the kitchen and in the mirror-image wall in the other side of the duplex that is the gift shop, I moved post cards and other things off the wall.  In both, I put towels down to catch leaking water and then went back to bed, falling back asleep easily knowing I’d done what I could.

Cloudy, overcast day

Cloudy, overcast day

When we woke up in the morning, it was still raining lightly and the wind was blowing steadily around 10-15mph from the north with some higher gusts.  It looked like a quiet day ahead.   Patty made fruit with yogurt and granola for breakfast (Chris – I know you said I could skip mention of fruit breakfasts but Jude says she likes knowing) and then Patty stayed in the kitchen to bake more granola.  I went next door to pick up the towels I’d put down overnight, wiped up wet spots, and then vacuumed the Guest Quarters, Museum, and Gift Shop.

DSC00770We put together some things we won’t need with us on the island for the remainder of our time here and took them down to the Engine House to take to the mainland on Monday.  We also had a bin of linens from the Guest Quarters, empty merchandise bins, a water jug, and some other misc. stuff.  We’re going to have a lot to take Wednesday – definitely not going to fit into one dinghy run.

The Wednesday Warriors very considerately brought all our big water jugs up on the tram when they were here last Wednesday saving us from having to go down the hill to get water in gallon-sized bottles.  After having the water up here for almost a week, we oddly think we prefer having it down the hill.  For one reason, the big containers take up a lot of room in the hallway but the main reason is that having the water down there means we have to go down the hill two or three times a day on average to get more.  That means we’re down there frequently to see how many boats are in the cove, how the outhouse is looking, how the grass looks, picking up the odd piece or trash, etc.  We just feel like we’re in tune with what’s going on all over the island.  Without having to go down for water, we have had a day or two this week where one or both of us didn’t go down the hill all day long.  It probably seems crazy…

Trawler and sailboat passing

Trawler and sailboat passing

Back up the hill, Patty went up the tower to dust the lens and then we had a snack of bread and goat cheese that was given to us by the Mustache Mama’s (delicious!).  Shortly after, two guys and a woman arrived by sailboat from Five Islands to see the museum and tower.  The rain had stopped by this point but the wind was stronger and blowing straight into the cove, meaning it’s not protected from wind and waves like it usually is when we have prevailing South/Southwest winds.  Because of the wind and waves, we were surprised to see anyone today.  After they toured the tower and checked out the museum, they went back down the hill, planning to sail on southward towards Portland.

DSC_0237We ate hot dogs for lunch – not a healthy meal at all but sometimes junk food is so tasty.  We were pretty certain Ethan wouldn’t have a ferry today because of the wind and seas and by the time we had lunch, it was late enough that we knew for sure we wouldn’t have the ferry group.  After lunch, the wind picked up a little more and shifted to so that it was coming from the west, frequently gusting way above the steady 15mph average we were seeing.

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Cuckolds Lighthouse (?) from Seguin

Surprisingly, a foursome came up the hill, a young couple who live in Five Islands part of the year, and his parents who live in Northport.  We asked them how bad the ride over was and they said it was really rough in the open motor boat.  They visited the museum and went up in the tower where the wind was blowing even harder making our time on the catwalk brief.  After the tower tour, they headed back down the hill to head home.

Patty and I were inside about fifteen minutes later when the wife of the young couple came running up the hill.  Patty went out to ask her if she had forgotten something and the look on her face showed something was wrong.  She quickly told us they had gotten their stern line wrapped around the boat’s propeller and the boat was crashing on the rocks.  Could we give her a knife?  Patty grabbed a kitchen knife and I got our Leatherman which has a sharp blade and the three of us ran down the hill.   When we got down there, the husband (in long pants and long sleeve shirt) was in the water between his boat and the rocks in front of the boat house trying to keep the boat from slamming into the rocks.  His parents were on board using a gaff and dinghy oar pushing against the rocks.  The wife jumped into the water and I handed her the kitchen knife which she handed to her husband to try to cut the rope which was wrapped tightly several times around the propeller shaft.

Wet shoes...

Wet shoes…

As soon as the husband moved to cut the rope, the boat started moving quickly towards the rocks at the beach.  The tide was just starting to go out from a high tide meaning there are a lot of rocks towards the beach making it as bad there as where they were in front of the boathouse.  Patty and I ran down to the beach to help hold the boat from there and just as we got down to the water, the husband cut the rope away and was now standing on the rocks in front of the boathouse frantically trying to find the boat key.  For some reason he’d take it out of the ignition when the rope got tangled and now couldn’t find it…

The boat continued moving towards the beach with only the wife in the water trying to hold it against big waves pushing it straight to the

Wet all over

Wet all over

rocks on the beach.  It was nuts…  Patty and I went straight into the water, me in my Keen hiking boots, to help hold the boat.  We got it turned around so the bow was pointing out, riding the waves better, and Patty got their VHF radio to hail the Coast Guard for help when the husbands’ father found the key in a console on the boat.  The wife was now aboard and she lowered the propeller and initially they had enough draft to start it but they were trying to get their dinghy aboard instead of just trying to starting the motor and getting away from the rocks.  By the time they got the dinghy into the boat, the propeller was pushing down into the sand.  Finally, with the husband now with us, he, Patty, and I were able to push the boat out far enough and the wife pushed the throttle, narrowly missing me and the husband with the propeller as she swung hard to the right, skipping the propeller over some submerged rocks, and finally getting out to water that was a safe depth.

DSC00776The husband was patting his pockets looking for money – he said they should have made a larger donation…  We told him just get to the boat and get home safely, come back later when the seas are safer.  Then he swam out to the boat and made it aboard with little time to spare before they would have been pushed into the rocks again.  He took the helm and pointed them straight out of the cove at what looked like full throttle.  Patty and I were both soaked but glad we were able to help them and that things didn’t turn out way worse.  After we got up the hill and changed into dry clothes, we looked north towards the Sheepscot and could see them crossing towards Five Islands.  They are really lucky and I imagine they will be more cautious about taking their boat out on a day like today – I know I would be.DSC00781

Visitors – 7

Favorite Moment(s) – watching the ‘distressed’ boat heading out of the cove towards home.

Sunrise – 5:42am
Sunset – 7:23pm

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Calm Before the Storm?

Sunday
August 21, 2016

It was nice and cool this morning with sunny skies and a light easterly breeze.  We took coffee to the porch and then Patty made egg sandwiches with tomato and cheese for breakfast.  The morning was otherwise quiet until our first guest arrived on his own boat around 10 o’clock.  Shortly after, a couple arrived, also in their own boat.

Egg sandwiches for breakfast

Egg sandwiches for breakfast

Ethan arrived at his regular time and radioed up that he’d brought some paperwork from the office for us and asked if one of us could come down to get it.  I went down while Patty was giving a tour to the couple that arrived in their own boat.  Once down there, Ethan asked me to come out to the boat to talk about one of our new moorings that’s gone missing.  On Friday, three boats were tied to it and we haven’t seen it since.  The folks on those boats spent the day in the cove but never came up so we don’t have a way to get in touch with them to see if they know what happened.  It’s a bummer because I know it was probably expensive to have all the mooring chains, ropes, and buoys replaced and one of our six is now lost.

Ethan rowed me back in so I could go up the hill to help Patty who had started giving tours to the first people in the ferry group to get up the hill.  We switched our normal places for a while and I worked the museum and gift shop while Patty ran the tower tours.  In the gift shop, I met a couple that was interested in the Seguin “piano” ghost story and asked me if I knew the name of the keeper involved and when it happened.  I’ve never specifically heard the who or when and said I didn’t know but another two women visiting together overheard us and wanted to know also and tried Googling it on their phones.  In the end, they found it was vague which I guess it has to be to keep the story alive.

Wet suits drying on the tramway.

Wet suits drying on the tramway.

I chatted with the couple that Patty took up in the tower earlier this morning and they told me they are members of Maine Islands Trails Association (MITA) who does volunteer work on Seguin and other islands.  Apparently they have a guide book of island trails and these visitors were able to checkoff some of ours as the first they hiked as MITA members.

As Ethan’s group was leaving, three kayakers arrived, having paddled over from Popham.  Two of them were visiting from Montreal and the third was a local who is friends with Julie, a FOSILS board member and regular Wednesday Warrior.  I made sure to point out the infamous gift shop screen door as one of the projects Julie worked on this summer.  Two of the guys were really tall, I’d guess well over 6’ 6” and had to really contort themselves to get out onto the catwalk up in the tower.

Phil Jermain, former F.O.S.I.L.S. board member.

Phil Jermain, former F.O.S.I.L.S. board member.

Phil Jermain was one of five in another group that visited in the afternoon.  Phil is a past President of F.O.S.I.L.S. and he led the tour of his group and I tagged along to listen to his spiel.  I had heard everything he shared with the other four in his group except the fact that the original lens shipped to Seguin was the wrong one and had to be exchanged for the correct one.  I wondered how long that took but he didn’t know the answer.  Phil also showed Patty a number of things in the museum of note to him (photos of him, etc.) and pointed out other things he had worked on in F.O.S.I.L.S. early years.

Along with Phil’s group, three others joined us in the tower for Phil’s tour – it was a dad with his two children.  The dad told us they visited last year and got pictures of the house, inside the tower, and elsewhere but no picture of the outside of the tower and decided they should come back to get that shot.  He also didn’t bring his wallet last time but he did this visit so they picked up a few things in the gift shop to take home with them.

Black beans tacos for dinner

Black beans tacos for dinner

Around dinner time, a single guy came up to visit the museum and tower.  He told us he was sailing south and when Patty asked his final destination, she was surprised to hear Cuba.  He said his boat insurance just started allowing boaters with their coverage to visit Cuba and he already planned to go to the Caribbean and figured he go to Cuba too.  Patty and I had the opportunity to take a short trip to Cuba several years ago and she told him how much we liked the people, food, and music in Old Havana where we stayed the entire time.  He planned to stay in the cove overnight tonight and then press on tomorrow towards Portland and beyond.

Storm clouds building?

Storm clouds building?

A final visitor came up in just his swimsuit – presumably he swam ashore – and went to sit on sunset bench for a few minutes and then headed down the hill again.  We never did talk with him and I suspect he was a little chilly in the breeze.

Patty soaked a batch of black beans yesterday and today she slow cooked them for dinner.  We had black bean tacos with white corn tortillas, diced tomato & onions, shredded cheese, jalapenos, and, of course, guacamole.

The forecast calls for rain overnight and into the morning along with strong winds tomorrow.  As the day wound down, we could see thick clouds over the mainland and fog building in the mouth of the Kennebec.  Maybe the forecast will be accurate?

Visitors – 46

Favorite Moment(s) – Learning a new Seguin fact from Phil

Sunrise – 5:41am
Sunset – 7:24pm

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Dawn to Dusk

Saturday
August 20, 2016

"Message in a Bottle" family.

“Message in a Bottle” family.

Overnight, the moon was huge and bright over Seguin, lighting up the entire yard around the house almost like daylight.  We watched it rise, which quite a show.  The moon was orange coming up, just like the sun is, but the sky was dark.  In the morning, it comfortably cool with a nice northerly breeze and sunny sky.  While Patty prepared fruit for breakfast, I worked on a blog post.

Message in a Wine Bottle

Message in a Wine Bottle

Immediately after breakfast, we started mowing the lawns at the top of the island and were about half way done when Patty caught her foot on the picnic table bench, putting a nice bruise on the top of her foot.  We had campers last night, a group of teenagers celebrating the 16th birthday of one of them, along with the birthday girl’s parents and brother.  Just a couple of minutes after Patty stopped to make sure her foot was ok, the campers came up the hill to see the museum.  We don’t think they slept much because they were all pretty glassy eyed and zombie-like when I started telling them the history of the lighthouse on Seguin.  I cut the spiel short and took them up to the catwalk where they pepped up a little.

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As I was up in the tower with the campers, I could see fog building in the mouth of the Kennebec and also to the North towards the Sheepscot.  Within a few minutes, fog developed to our east also and slowly enveloped the island reducing visibility to the edge of the island.  The campers were hoping to spend the morning in the sun on the beach

Foggy morning.

Foggy morning.

and were disappointed in the change of weather.  Patty’s foot was sore but ok so we both went back to mowing again after the campers toured the tower and shopped in the gift-shop.

Keeper in Training Xavier with Keeper Patty

Keeper in Training Xavier with Keeper Patty

When a family of four from Yarmouth arrived, Patty stopped mowing to greet them and I kept going with the push mower finishing a half-hour or so later.  The family found a bottle on the beach at the cove with a message in it – it had originally been dropped in the water at Prince Edward Island and was found and dropped in the ocean again yesterday at Popham Beach.  Patty gave the older daughter and her mom a piece of paper and they added their own note and plan to drop it from their boat when they leave Seguin.  The girls, Maya and Anna completed more than enough activities to get their Keeper in Training certificates.

Church group of 85 from Brunswick

Church group of 85 from Brunswick

When the family went off to hike one of the trails, Patty finished the riding mowing and I cleaned up to greet any visitors that might arrive but none arrived before she finished.  Afterwards, we had Brunswick

Church group of 85 from Brunswick

Church group of 85 from Brunswick

(Virginia) stew with bread & cheese.  It’s a canned stew that we brought with us from our stop in Virginia on our way to Maine and it’s something I’ve loved since I was a child.  I can’t believe we still had a can of it left.

Church group of 85 from Brunswick

Church group of 85 from Brunswick

Following lunch, with the fog still thick, two young women arrived together at about the same time as a mom with her son and daughter.  None expected the fog today and the weather reports on the radio continued to say today would be sunny all day long.  It’s kind of like hearing there’s 0% chance of rain when you are outside in the rain.  But finally, by early to mid-afternoon, the wind picked up a little and shifted slightly to the NE and the fog lifted.  It remained cool with the temperature around the mid-60’s.

Church group of 85 from Brunswick

Church group of 85 from Brunswick

An extended family of seven arrived in their own boat as the fog lifted and were happy to know they wouldn’t be returning in the fog.  Most of the family was from Massachusetts but the grandparents live in Minneapolis.  The youngest boy in the family, Xavier, completed the Activity Kit earning a Keeper in Training certificate from Patty.

Playing the flute in the tower.

Playing the flute in the tower.

Another family of four arrived here having last visited seven years ago when the Mom was pregnant with their daughter.  I asked the daughter if she remember being here but she didn’t.  They live in Richmond, Maine and suggested to us that we go to The Old Goat Pub there on our day off or after we leave Seguin at the end of the season.  That works for us!  Three more visitors (two women and a man) came into the museum while I was in the tower with the family and chatted with Patty for a while and she found yet another person that went to summer camp in our hometown of Brevard, North Carolina.  That has to make a half-dozen or more people that have told us that this summer.

And, playing the flute on the catwalk.

And, playing the flute on the catwalk.

All of our visitors so far today were just the warm-up acts for our final two groups.  Late in the afternoon, a church group from Brunswick, totaling 85, came to Seguin for their third annual visit.  On their first visit, a couple in the group snuck away to change their clothes and then walked around the tower to where everyone else was sitting – her in a simple wedding dress and him in a suit.  To everyone’s surprise except the minister, they were married at the top of Seguin Island with the sun setting beautifully behind them.  Pretty awesome story.  Now, each year on their anniversary, the church brings a large group out in the lobster boats of a couple members of their congregation work, to celebrate.  The couple were funny telling both me and Patty that one year they would have scheduling conflict and everyone else would worry there was trouble in their marriage.  That’s pressure.

The happy couple that are responsible for the annual church trip to Seguin.

The happy couple that are responsible for the annual church trip to Seguin.

The church group ate a picnic dinner and then most toured the tower in groups followed by a member of the group playing the flute in the tower which sounded really nice.  The echo amplifying the music for everyone on the lawn to hear.  Their minister had a brief sermon and then they started packing up to leave.  Although they were an easy group and didn’t require much from us but we were still glad to have had forewarning of their visit.  My aunt and uncle who visited last week happened to mention to someone (at the Hampton Inn in Bath I think)

The Bachelor Party gang on the Seguin Lawn & Croquet Club.

The Bachelor Party gang on the Seguin Lawn & Croquet Club.

that they were coming out to see us on Seguin and the person told them they were visiting on the 20th with a large group from their church.  We didn’t know exactly how many people or what time of day, but we knew they planned to come and the time of day they chose was perfect.

Sunset croquet game

Sunset croquet game

Our final group of the day was a dozen or so guys here to camp for a bachelor party.  As they were arriving, the church group was leaving and the sixteen-year old’s were long gone.  As I wrote above, the timing was perfect.  We met the guy that made the arrangements for the bachelor party camp out several weeks ago when he visiting SeguinWP_20160820_19_15_25_Pro with his family (mom, dad, sister, etc.) and a friend who was also part of the bachelor party group.  They set up croquet on the top lawn but it wasn’t normal rules – it was more like a combination putt-putt croquet game with natural obstacles like rocks and tall grass that had to be played around.  We had a good time hanging out with them and as far a bachelor parties go, they were tame and respectful.  An hour or so after sunset, they went down to the camping area and our work day wrapped up.

Putt-putt croquet on the lawn

Putt-putt croquet on the lawn

It was a long day and we were pretty tired but it had been fun with lots of interesting people visiting and a weeks-worth of weather packed into a in the span of a single day.  With all the visitors, we even managed to get a good bit of mowing done.  Best of all, Patty’s foot was bruised and sore but nothing serious.

Visitors – 134

Favorite Moment(s) – All of it.  But to pick a few things….  Message in a bottle, having a prayer said for us (can’t hurt, right?), and hanging out with the bachelor party gang.

Sunrise – 5:40am
Sunset –  7:28pm

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Sweet Sixteen Birthday Campers

Friday
August 18, 2016

Warm, very sunny, and no wind were the weather conditions to start the day on Seguin.  Patty made the two of us egg, chard, cheese & tomato sandwiches on toast while our four overnight guests were up early also eating their breakfast outside at the picnic table.  Shortly after we finished eating (8:15am), the first two visitors of the day came up the hill and walked down towards the Whistle House.

Peaceful in the cove

Peaceful in the cove

I was in the museum getting ready to fix a hanging exhibit when one of the visitors came in and started looking around.  Patty came in a few minutes later and took them (they were brothers) up in the tower along with others that were also early arrivals.  I went down the hill to mow the camping area as we expected it would be quiet this early but on my way down the hill I passed another couple and while I was mowing, Patty had five more visitors come up from three different boats.  In all, I counted six boats tied up when I went to get the mower out of the Engine House.

Flag blowing in strong wind

Flag blowing in strong wind

Scallops from Plant's Seafood in Bath

Scallops from Plant’s Seafood in Bath

I tried to finish mowing quickly and got back up the hill in about a half hour but Patty had everything under control (no surprise) and told me to relax and take a few minutes to cool off.  It slowed down not long after and we sat on the porch looking out on the water when we saw two people walk down the hill that we hadn’t seen before.  They must have come up just to hike the North Trail and then leave.

We ate a pre-ferry snack of leftover pizza and calzone that we brought back from lunch yesterday and then waited for Ethan’s group to arrive.  Our overnight guests were a little overloaded with sun so we setup the front porch veranda for them if they wanted to sit in the shade on the Keeper’s side of the porch.  I’m not sure they did but they seemed to appreciate that it was there if they wanted it.

Pasta and scallops

Pasta and scallops

Ethan’s group included several different couples and families, about a dozen in all.  One couple, from Maine, took lots of pictures of the lens DSC00737and then stamped their lighthouse passport in the gift shop.  Each passport has a place for 60 lighthouse stamps and they were working on their third passport book.  They were bigtime lighthouse enthusiasts.  Alongside the ferry group, a family of eight arrived in their own boat to see the island, museum, gift shop, and lighthouse tower.DSC00738

After the ferry group and large family headed down the hill, we went down for a swim but didn’t stay at the beach too long since a dinghy was on its’ way in carrying three people while we were in the water.  At this point there were 7 boats in the cove on 5 moorings and sailboats circling just outside the cove.  The 3 from the dinghy came up the hill and we learned that they are on day 2 of a 9 day sailing trip.  Although they had visited Seguin last year, this was their first tour of the tower and DSC00740museum.  Last year when they came, their timing was between T’Ann and Larry returning from their off-island day and the volunteers already down the hill.  They did meet briefly on the trail as they were leaving and T’Ann and Larry were coming up with supplies.

These three began a steady stream of visitors including a couple from Pemaquid with their daughter, who now lives in Breckinridge, CO, and their dog Tele (short for telecaster, as in the guitar).  Also visiting this DSC00741afternoon were two large family groups, one of 6 and one of 7.  The group of 6 included a woman from Niagara on Lake, Ontario – new pin in the map!  The two smaller groups this afternoon were people we met earlier in the season that were now bringing friends that were new to the island.

DSC00744Our last visitors of the day were Bill and Caroline who visited in June.  They came up to watch the sunset and planned to stay in the cove for the night.  While talking to them we realized that Bill lives next door to Andrew who is coming tomorrow night to camp with a group celebrating an upcoming wedding.  You gotta love a group of guys who come to Seguin for a Bachelor’s party!  Bill and Caroline also told us that tonight’s camping group of young ladies, celebrating a 16th birthday on one of them, just pulled in to the cove.  We were starting to wonder if they were going to make it here today, but at this point it is dark so I guess we’ll meet them in the morning.

Bill, Caroline, and Patty

Bill, Caroline, and Patty

Visitors – 69

Favorite Moment(s) – Taking a swim in the afternoon and watching sunset while chatting with Bill & Caroline at the sunset bench.

Sunrise – 5:38am
Sunset – 7:28pm

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Fly By

Thursday
August 18, 2016

It’s our Wednesday off-island day on a Thursday this week.  For the first time this summer, we weren’t able to go off-island on our regularly scheduled day because of weather so we’re heading to the mainland today.  That, combined

Sunrise view from the front porch of the Keeper's Quarters..

Sunrise view from the front porch of the Keeper’s Quarters..

with being off-island on Saturday for Summerfest has us quite confused about the day of the week!  Shortly after we got up at 5:30, we saw a beautiful sunrise into a clear sky.  After bagels and cream cheese for breakfast, we took our thermos of coffee and headed down the hill.

Sunrise view from the front porch of the Keeper's Quarters..

Sunrise view from the front porch of the Keeper’s Quarters..

At the cove, we moved our empty water jugs, trash, and packs going ashore down to the cove and loaded Hinckley.  Patty got the pump while I was packing things into the dinghy and we added a little air to both sides to firm them up.  Just when we were ready to sit and enjoy our coffee on the bus stop log, Patty realized she’d forgotten her glasses – should she get them or go the mainland without them.  She debated with herself for a moment and then headed up the hill to the house.  Down at the cove, the sky had clouded up completely and the humidity felt really sticky – how did that happen so fast?  It was clear and nice up top…

Sunrise view from the front porch of the Keeper's Quarters.

Sunrise view from the front porch of the Keeper’s Quarters.

Patty came back down with no glasses – she couldn’t find them anywhere in the house.  A quick look in my pack and there they were – she outsmarted herself and put them there last night before going to bed.  After her quick jog up and down the trail, she thought it felt even muggier than I did.

My new goin' to town shirt - thanks Jude!

My new goin’ to town shirt – thanks Jude!

Ethan arrived right at 7am and we rowed out to meet his boat.  On board was a full load of F.O.S.I.L.S. volunteers, including most of the regulars; Cyndy, Tom, Floyd, Ken, and Rick although Julie couldn’t make it but we had Cyndy’s friend David along for the day.  After the dinghy shuffle, we headed off towards Popham and had a smooth ride over under still very cloudy skies.  It looked like it was going to rain although the forecast didn’t call for any precipitation.  Ethan predicted no rain, and that is better than any other forecast we have found!

Patty with our overnight guests.

Patty with our overnight guests.

After loading our truck, we drove towards Phippsburg and Bath but immediately heard a click-click-click coming from one of the passenger side tires.  Oh no.  Not a flat!  We pulled over by Popham State Park and while Patty inspected the tires, I slowly rolled forward.  Ah ha – a plastic sticker was stuck to the front tire on the passenger side.  She pulled it off and we continued north without the click-click-click.  What a relief.

We did the usual loop of errands – drop water jugs at Cyndy, laundromat, Shaw’s, laundromat, Rogers Ace Hardware, Plant’s Seafood, and laundromat again.  Following Ethan’s suggestion, we next drove to Five Islands on the Georgetown peninsula which we can see from Seguin Island.  There’s one lobster shack restaurant at Five Islands and we hoped to get something to eat but we arrived too early – it was around 10:30 or maybe a little earlier and the place wouldn’t open until 11:30. We walked around the dock and checked out the surrounding small islands and the homes built on them.  It’s a pretty place and we’d like to come back when the restaurant is open but for today, we decided to move on rather than wait.

Baguette and goat cheese for dinner.

Baguette and goat cheese for dinner.

Back up to Route 1 just north of Bath, we turned north (away from Bath) and drove to Wiscasset, another place that lots of people have come from to visit Seguin including the kids from Camp Chewonki who camped here in July.  Wiscasset is on the south side of the Sheepscot River with Route 1 traffic slowly moving across a bridge over the river on its way towards Boothbay and beyond.  In the last couple of blocks before the river, there are lots of shops and restaurants to choose from and we decided to go to one called Sarah’s overlooking the river.  There was a food stand called “Red’s” across the street that must be good (or tourist popular) because there was a long line of non-local looking folks waiting to order.  We were both happy with what we ordered; a mushroom and sausage pizza for me and a calzone with spinach, mushroom and tomato for Patty.

Sunset on Seguin

Sunset on Seguin

We had a nice leisurely lunch and then headed back to Bath to stop at the Natural Foods store for some fresh baked bread and then at Cyndy’s along the way to Popham to pick up our water.  After unloading the truck dockside and parking at the chapel, we sat on the dock enjoying the warm sun (the clouds burned off and it was totally clear now) and cool water on our feet and legs.  While sitting on the dock, Patty spoke with Terri who was here earlier this summer.  She and John will be visiting again next week.  We are very excited.  Terri will be here for her birthday (yes, 29, of course) so a phone call to Jackson for lobster is in order!  Ethan returned to the high dock in his big boat with the regular Thursday ferry group and after dropping them off, got his small boat and came to pick us up.

Sunset on Seguin

Sunset on Seguin

We rode back to Seguin and arrived in the cove to see five boats moored up and a lot of people on the beach.  Apparently, the volunteers had been waiting on the beach for Ethan when one, two, three, four, then five boats all showed up and people started coming ashore.  Cyndy and Ken went back up the hill with some of the visitors so when we arrived, it was a little chaotic.  Ethan had another commitment and was hoping to leave quickly so he nosed right up to the beach where Patty and I hopped out and he passed our stuff to us over the bow.  Floyd and I held onto the boat while all the volunteers made their way back down and into the boat.

Sunset on Seguin

Sunset on Seguin

One couple on the beach had moored at the outer mooring and had expected to use our dinghy.  One of the volunteers told them they couldn’t so they swam ashore, figuring we’d say ok once the others left I guess.  We told them no, sorry, they couldn’t use it but I offered to row them out to their boat if they wanted to go right away and they took me up on the offer.  Meanwhile, Patty met two of the four overnight visitors we have staying with us tonight on the beach where they were swimming.  After meeting guests coming down the hill who said they were the last ones she changed into her suit and joined Sheridan, our overnight guest who was still in the water.

Once I got back from rowing the couple out, Patty and I headed up towards the house, with a little help from visitors with our water jugs, and arrived at the top of the hill to unpack.  Besides the other two overnight visitors who were sitting on the front porch, there were no other visitors about so we were able to unpack and put things away without needing to rush.  It was surprising with so many boats in the cove to have no one else up here.

WP_20160818_19_35_38_ProWhen we were squared away, we met Bill and Carol, the two overnight guests we had not met before and reintroduced ourselves to Sheridan and Richard, the other two overnight guests, who we met at Summerfest last Saturday night.  Sheridan and Richard won a night on Seguin at Summerfest ’15 and finally had the opportunity to use their night this summer, inviting their friends Bill and Carol.

They all made themselves at home, using the gas grill to cook and the picnic table to enjoy drinks, snacks, and dinner.  They quickly learned that one person always had to stay at the table or the gulls would enjoy the meal instead of their foursome.  While

Patty, Richard, and Sheridan folding the flag.

Patty, Richard, and Sheridan folding the flag.

they were sitting at the picnic table and Patty was outside talking with them, a small helicopter approached Seguin from the northeast and hovered down to just a few feet above the helicopter pad before taking off again towards the south.  It dove down towards the water after clearing the west side of the island and then rose up again as it flew

Helicopter passing over Seguin

Helicopter passing over Seguin

away.  I had forgotten but Patty remembered that a visitor is planning to come here by helicopter soon and was going to do a fly-by on his way to Portland beforehand to check the landing pad.  We just didn’t realize he’d practically land.  Or at least we think that’s who it was…

Full moon fever.

Full moon fever.

After our big lunch, we had a typically small day off-island dinner, this time the remaining baguette and goat cheese that our last overnight visitors (the Mustache Mama’s) gave us when they were here.  Delicious again!  Bread.  Cheese.  Yum!

It cooled off after sunset and most of us put on light jackets against the chill.  Patty invited the overnight guests to lower and fold the flag which she helped supervise while I snapped some pictures.  It was a nice way to end the evening.

We didn’t have a chance to survey all that the volunteers did today but we appreciate that they brought up five of our water jugs up to the house on the tram and also admired the fine workmanship on the soffit, fascia, and wood gutter repair that is almost complete on the Whistle House.

Visitors – 50

Full moon rising to our east.

Full moon rising to our east.

Favorite Moment(s) – sitting on the dock at Popham with a cold beer each, seeing helicopter almost land, chatting with our overnight guests throughout the afternoon and evening.

Sunrise – 5:40am
Sunset – 7:26pm

‪#‎Seguinisland ‪#‎seguinislandlight ‪#‎seguinislandlighthouse ‪#‎maine ‪#‎LifeOnTheRock

 

Kale Yeah!

Wednesday
August 17, 2016

As forecast, we had strong wind this morning along with big swells on the ocean, and mostly clear skies.  A small craft advisory is in effect and early on, we didn’t see any boats at all out on the water although we would see some

Green garden snake by the info kiosk.  Not the garter snakes we kept seeing elsewhere today.

Green garden snake by the info kiosk. Not the garter snakes we kept seeing elsewhere today.

later in the day.  Lots of flies have made their way into the house through cracks in the windows and doors and small tears in the screen leading Patty and me to carry fly-swatters around with us.  The flies are even worse outside but we’re hopeful that the strong winds today will drive them away – they were not a bother at all this summer until just a few days ago.

After breakfast (fruit), Patty went into the other side of the duplex to clean the Guest Quarters, Museum, and Gift Shop while I went down the hill to mow.  Patty came down the hill while I was still down there to drop some things off in the Engine House that we’ll take ashore

Part of Patty's berry harvest

Part of Patty’s berry harvest

tomorrow and also to get a few gallons of water to bring up to the house.  Before heading back up the hill, she walked the Cove and Cobblestone Trails to pick berries and harvested a good sized paper bags’ worth.  While cutting the grass near the Engine House, I kept having to dodge snakes, or they were dodging me, so I wouldn’t run them over with the mower.

Clothes on the line being whipped around in the wind.

Clothes on the line being whipped around in the wind.

Back up at the house, as Patty made lunch I vacuumed our side of the house.  We had a big salad with garden greens and the rest of the mackerel fish we had on top of the salad.  Around lunchtime, the sky filled with thick dark clouds and the winds increased but without a consistent direction.  Our weather station showed the wind switching all around the compass and the flag showed the same by getting itself wrapped around the pole.  In spite of that and big swells still rolling past the island, we were starting to see boats out on the water including one lobster boat pulling pots just off our eastern shore.

View down the tram to the edge of the Cove.

View down the tram to the edge of the Cove.

After lunch, I went back down the hill to fix the oarlock in our dinghy Hinckley and Patty worked in the Whistle House painting the rest of the milepost signs we plan to put up.  We’re going to leave room for future caretakers to add their own places if the milepost makes it through the winter and is still standing next summer and beyond.  When she finished painting, she went berry pickin’ again, all the way out the North Trail where the flies waited to attack until she got to the end and then harassed her all the way back to the trailhead.

Flag wrapped around pole in swirling winds.

Flag wrapped around pole in swirling winds.

When I was working on the oarlock, a sailboat surprisingly came into the cove and after circling three or four times, successfully gaffed a mooring rope and tied up.  Down at sea level, the wind was blowing directly into the cove creating choppy conditions on top of the swells.  To me, it doesn’t look like a very comfortable place to ride out the bad weather but I guess it’s better than the wide open ocean.

Later when we were back up the hill, a Mom with her three kids came up the Lighthouse Trail.  We were surprised to see them and even more surprised when she told us they boated over with her Mom & Dad in a motor boat from Boothbay.  “Wasn’t it rough?” I asked.  “It was bad” she said.  Apparently it rocked her youngest to sleep but the rest of

Building the Wile E. Coyote Acme Bird Trap

Building the Wile E. Coyote Acme Bird Trap

them didn’t sound like they enjoyed the ride.  The Mom & Dad (the kids’ grandparents) stayed down at the cove in their boat while the others came up the hill to see the museum and lighthouse.  Up on the catwalk, it was really windy but really not quite as bad as expected.  They told me they saw a bunch of snakes on the Lighthouse Trail when they were walking up the hill and as soon as we got down from the tower we saw one, then two, three, four, five…  They were all over the lawn outside the gift-shop and museum.  They must love the wet grass that we have today but have had so rarely over the summer.  It was a little freaky to see so many – more than I saw earlier by Paco’s.

Patty working on the blog in the living room.

Patty working on the blog in the living room.

When the Mom and her kids went back down the hill, we decided to go down too to see how things look down there now.  The sky was still dark and cloudy, getting darker actually, but the wind was dying down.  We were curious to see if the sailboat was stilled moored in the cove and also to see the boat the others came in from Boothbay to Seguin.  When we got down to the boathouse deck, the sailboat was still there, still rocking and rolling, and the six who came in the motor boat were searching for sea glass on the beach.  They were serious about it with a five-gallon bucket and sifter, looking like prospectors hunting for gold.

Patty loves the mustache!

Patty loves the mustache!

The two older children setup a Wile E. Coyote looking trap with driftwood, a rock, and length of rope, baited with a whole crab they were able to snatch from a seagull when he landed and got chased by other gulls.  We didn’t stay around to see them catch whatever it was they were trying to get but I suspect they’ll be as successful as Wile E. is himself.

Kale Yeah!

Kale chips – Kale Yeah!

By dinner time, the clouds had moved off the east and the sun came out.  The wind died down and the swells in the ocean had noticeably diminished.  We happily noticed that the flies didn’t seem as bad either.  I hope that latter condition holds for the next few weeks at least.

WP_20160817_19_30_33_ProPatty made chips with Kale from the garden and then chili with jalapeno cornbread for dinner.  Afterwards, we watched a beautiful sunset that was totally unexpected given how the weather looked for most of the day.

We texted with Ethan and confirmed that we’re on for tomorrow morning at 7am, like a regular Wednesday, and Cyndy confirmed that she and some others volunteers will come out as well, also like a regular Wednesday.  Except that it will be a Thursday.WP_20160817_19_33_52_Pro

Visitors – 6

Favorite Moment(s) – Watching waves in the morning and berry picking in the afternoon.

Sunrise – 5:36am
Sunset – 7:31pm

WP_20160817_19_34_27_Pro

‪#‎Seguinisland ‪#‎seguinislandlight ‪#‎seguinislandlighthouse ‪#‎maine ‪#‎LifeOnTheRock

 

We’ve had a great run…

Tuesday
August 16, 2016

Our five overnight guests (the self-proclaimed Mustache Mama’s) were already outside on the porch this morning when I went out to put up the flag.  The winds were calm, the sky was clear, and it was warm and humid (Maine humid anyway).  The flies were still out in force and it seems to me the lack of wind is a contributing factor.

Ethan's ferry group running from the flies!

Ethan’s ferry group running from the flies!

Although they said they weren’t going to leave until later, the “Mama’s” went down the hill with their things to go out Cobblestone Trail and then eventually leave on their boat.  So, we said our goodbye’s and assured them honestly that they had been a part of our Favorite Moment(s) yesterday.   They were all so nice and friendly, not to mention generous with their gifts of wine, fresh goat cheese, and a delicious baguette.  I hope they enjoyed staying on Seguin this year as much as we enjoyed having them here.

Late morning, a family of six was our first group of visitors for the day.  They’re staying near at Popham Beach near the former Coast Guard Station there and boated over to see Seguin.  They were interested in seeing the Guest Quarters here when they heard it was possible to stay overnight on the island so Patty showed them the upstairs after they came down from the tower.

Nice portrait of the group from the ferry.

Nice portrait of the group from the ferry.

Ethan’s ferry arrived before noon as usual but the ferry group consisted of a single party of eight made up of one man and seven teenagers.  The kids raced up the hill followed by their chaperone who followed at a more reasonable pace.  They are all staying on Long Island just up from the mouth of the Kennebec River which the adult guy said he’d been visiting since childhood.  I never did catch if they were a camp or what but they were all nice and fun even if they didn’t like the flies at all.  At all!  Picture 7 teens racing out of the North trail

The Leeward with the group we hosted on Seguin now fishing off the west side of island.

The Leeward with the group we hosted on Seguin now fishing off the west side of island.

swatting and yelping!  After visiting the museum, gift-shop, and tower, they went back down to Ethan’s boat and he took them fishing off the west side of Seguin.

Two more couples came up shortly afterwards, though not together, they went up in the tower with me at the same time.  One couple was at the end of a week-long sailing trip out of North Yarmouth and were returning home today, a day early, because of a small-craft advisory posted for tonight through mid-day tomorrow.  The other couple sailed from Kittery today and said they keep their boat in Portsmouth, New Hampshire but live outside of Boston.  They shared lots of sailing stories – have you been here or there, how are conditions, etc.?

Just after them came a threesome of ‘swim-ins’, which is our name for those who travel without a dinghy and jump in to get to shore.  They were two gals and a guy from NJ, VA & MD, all with family summer places on Ocean Point.  The guy reported the water temperature to a balmy 67 degrees.  That might sound cold to you, but our first swim of the season was in 58-degree water, so I’ll take it.  With a smile!  The two young ladies were recent James Madison University graduates, the same school my bike-riding niece Samantha is set to graduate from in December and my nephew Tyler graduated from a couple of years ago.  My cousin Morag’s daughter Jess also recently graduated from JMU.  I ran all the names by them but none were familiar…

Lobsta boat off the west side of Seguin

Lobsta boat off the west side of Seguin

Next came Susan and Bill who were here 2 weeks ago.  On that trip, Bill and two guy friends came up the hill while the women tended to the boat.  Bill had to come back and bring Susan up to climb the tower (and to meet the totally awesome caretakers!)  Thank you Bill for the very generous donation!!

Finally, after 2pm, we sat down to a lunch of mackerel salad sandwiches.  After lunch, Patty started on cleaning the Guest Quarter’s while I worked on a blog post.  During this time, even though there was no wind to speak of, we could see clouds & haze gathering.  We had an afternoon plan of mowing the ‘lower island’ and fixing a problem with one of the oar locks in the dinghy, but it started to rain.  The wind switched to come out of the east, which is very exciting…maybe those pesky flies will be gone soon.

The Leeward and the Lobsta boat

The Leeward and the Lobsta boat

Late in the afternoon, we texted with Ethan about Wednesday day off-island schedule.  We usually confirm pick-up time (always 7am so far) late on Tuesday for Wednesday morning but we knew the forecast was not looking too promising.  ‘We’ve had a great run…’ was the response.  So, it looks like for the first time ALL SUMMER, we won’t make it to shore on Wednesday.  I don’t know if that is a record, but it sure feels like it!  We have been so lucky with the weather.  Cyndy told us that last summer the weather on Wednesday only cooperated a couple of times all summer and the off-island day ended up being Thursday for T-Ann and Larry virtually every week.  The clouds continued coming in and the forecast for overnight was for heavy rain and wind so we battened down the hatches and laid out the rags and towels everywhere we know the rain falls inside the house.

Patty made burgers with homemade guacamole for dinner.  Then it was a quiet evening inside reading and listening to the rain on the windows and roof.  It’s weird knowing we’ll be here tomorrow when we’d normally be off-island which just causes our minds more confusion since we were just off-island Saturday for Summerfest.  For the past few days we’ve been mixed up on what day it was, thinking we got back on Wednesday when it was really Sunday.  It’s been completely regular for almost three months until this week.  Then again, maybe we just get mixed up easy?

Visitors – 33

Favorite Moment(s) – When it rained outside but not inside.

Sunrise – 5:35am
Sunset – 7:32pm

‪#‎Seguinisland ‪#‎seguinislandlight ‪#‎seguinislandlighthouse ‪#‎maine ‪#‎LifeOnTheRock

 

Mustache Mammas

Monday
August 15, 2016

The day started off cloudy and warm with no breeze at all.  After fruit and yogurt for breakfast, I worked on the blog while Patty cleaned the museum, gift shop, and Guest Quarters following Friday’s big storm and the overnight visitors we hosted.  We hadn’t had time until this morning to tidy up since we arrived back on Seguin yesterday with

Full moon during the night last night.

Full moon during the night last night.

the full ferry boat.  After escaping from the computer, I dumped the finish tray from our composting toilet and reloaded it with newly “material” ready for finishing.  I also checked the Guest Quarters toilet which was ok as far as solids but the liquids are close to full…and five women are coming to stay tonight.  Hope it’ll be ok.  What does it say that I’d rather attend to the toilets than stare at our laptop?

Nice boat cruising past.  Small cruise shop?  Large yacht?

Nice boat cruising past. Small cruise shop? Large yacht?

Because I hadn’t had enough bathroom action, we went down the hill to rake and clean the Clivus outhouse.  When we got down there, we met a large group of fourteen coming ashore in two boats.  They came over from Fox Island for their annual summer visit to Seguin.  One person in the group was a member of F.O.S.I.L.S. and had on a William & Mary t-shirt which caught our attention because I grew up in Williamsburg and both of my parents and my aunt Mary-Lewis who was just here all graduated from there.  The man with the t-shirt on hadn’t gone to W&M but his son, who was in the group of 14, had.

Heather's father was a Keeper on Seguin in '66-'67.

Heather’s father was a Keeper on Seguin in ’66-’67.

All the while that we talked with the group, we were being harassed by flies, the worst invasion of flies we’ve had all summer.  With a very light to non-existent breeze (and any breeze we got came from the mainland), the flies were plentiful and hungry.  They caused me to move the spiel portion of the tower tour from the steps outside the tower to inside where the echo is loud but the flies were less bothersome.

Ethan’s ferry arrived a little before noon but a larger than usual number stayed aboard to fish and we only had six people come up the hill.  The first two ladies to make it up the hill were friends from central Kansas that were here in Maine on vacation and were enjoying the relatively cool weather here as compared to their hometown.  Another man from Kennebunk, Maine was really interested in seeing the museum and lighthouse but after climbing a dozen or so stairs turned back because of his discomfort about heights.  Being able to see through the stairs to the floor below was disconcerting so we went back to the base of the tower and I described the lens and its’ history before he went outside to view it from ground level.

Mamma gull feeding her young ones (who are bigger than she)

Mamma gull feeding her young ones (who are bigger than she)

The last three in Ethan’s group were a Mom (Heather) and her daughter (Bridgette) and son (Johnny).  Heather’s father Fred Kahrl was a Seguin Island Keeper from 1966-1967 and met Heather’s Mom while station in Maine.  After Seguin, he was transferred to a station in Kodiak, Alaska where Heather was born.  Heather and her kids now live in Boulder, Montana but were back in Maine visiting family for their annual summer visit.  After going up to the top of the tower, we went into the museum where Heather pointed out some photos her father donated to F.O.S.I.L.S. for which he was credited on the captions.  They were all charming and Bridgette was especially bubbly and talkative, much more mature than her age, with steady eye contact and a firm Montana handshake.  We thoroughly enjoyed having them visit and will certainly remember them amongst all the visitors we’ve had this summer.

Our overnight visitors on their annual visit to Seguin.  They braved the flies and spent their time outside.

Our overnight visitors on their annual visit to Seguin. They braved the flies and spent their time outside.

Before we sat down for lunch, three more visitors came up the hill including repeat visitors for us Bob & Vicki with their friend Tim who had not been to Seguin before.  We laughed when we saw Vicki coming up the hill carrying her own fly-swatter.  The flies were that bad today!  They stopped at Cobblestone Beach for a snack and carried along the fly-swatter to make sitting still tolerable down there.  I took the three of them up in the tower and out on to the catwalk which has fortunately been a refuge from the flies all day.

Patty and I took a break for lunch and had a salad with greens from the garden and some sliced pork left over from our pork chop dinner last night.

The sky at dusk tonight.

The sky at dusk tonight.

After lunch, a steady stream of visitors continued with three men from Annapolis, Maryland that are on a sailing adventure together.  Leighton, Jack, and Marc started in Portland (not Annapolis) and are sailing the area for a week or so.  While they were checking out the museum, three women came up – a couple who live in Portland, Oregon and the Mother of one of them who lives locally in Maine.  One of the young ladies is from North Carolina originally and told us she went to camp in Brevard.  She asked if Rocky’s is still open in Brevard and it is.  It’s a fun, old

They call themselves the Mustache Mamma.  Not sure what that's all about but Patty joined in.

They call themselves the Mustache Mamma. Not sure what that’s all about but Patty joined in.

timey soda fountain that sells burgers, sandwiches, and ice cream in what used to be a Walgreens Drug Store in the 50’s.  Before they came up in the tower, they had a picnic on the lawn and spilled something sugary on the canvas bag they carried their lunch in.  By the time we came back down from the tower, the bag was totally covered with hundreds of flies so we shared a fly-swatter which they used to attack the flies with glee.

Another foursome arrived for a visit, two of whom had been here before and two who had not.  After them, another threesome came up and just wanted to browse in the museum and get t-shirts but weren’t interested in going up in the tower.  Or at least the dad wasn’t but I think his son wanted to.  They live in Five Islands and come out often so after buying some swag, they started back towards their boat.

Our guests lowering the flag with Patty's assistance.

Our guests lowering the flag with Patty’s assistance.

Before the last group left, our overnight guests Jenn, Holly, Lizzie, Annette, and Karen came up the front lawn from the Lighthouse Trail carrying lots of food and other provisions.  It turns out that Holly lives just a couple of houses away from the man that was just leaving and chatted with him for a few minutes before he left.  Our overnight guests stayed on Seguin last summer so they were already familiar with the accommodations, composting-101, and everything else about overnighting here.

Mustache Mamma's at the sunset bench.

Mustache Mamma’s at the sunset bench.

Almost immediately after stowing their stuff inside the Guest Quarters, the went out to the picnic table to enjoy food and drink with the slowly setting sun in the background.  They were really thoughtful and brought us some wine and later gave us a really tasty baguette and goat cheese.  They were an absolute pleasure to have stay here on Seguin and undoubtedly provided several of our favorite moments of the day!WP_20160815_19_51_31_Pro

Ethan gave us some Mackerel a while back but we’d frozen it because at the time we had other meals already planned but Patty took it out today to cook.  Mackerel’s a smallish, boney, fishy fish but is pretty good when prepared as a fish salad (kind of like chicken or tuna salad) and

Mustache Mamma's at the sunset bench.

Mustache Mamma’s at the sunset bench.

that’s what Patty planned for tonight but we got a late start on dinner and by the time she pan fried and de-boned the fish, she didn’t feel like finishing the rest of the meal and, having been given a delicious looking bakery fresh baguette from our overnight guests, we decided to eat that instead and save the fish for tomorrow.  So, that’s what we did and the bread and cheese was even better than it looked.

We end the evening together in the living room, reading and talking, before heading up to bed.WP_20160815_20_08_11_Pro

Visitors – 41

Favorite Moment(s) – meeting Heather, the daughter of Seguin Keeper Fred Kahrl and her two children.  Lowering and folding the flag with the five mustachioed ladies that stayed in the guest quarters overnight.

Sunrise – 5:34am
Sunset – 7:34pm

Baguette we received from our guests with bruschetta & cheese became an impromptu dinner.

Baguette we received from our guests with bruschetta & cheese became an impromptu dinner.

‪#‎Seguinisland ‪#‎seguinislandlight ‪#‎seguinislandlighthouse ‪#‎maine ‪#‎LifeOnTheRock

 

Where Are We?

Sunday
August 14, 2016

Neither of us knew where we were when we woke up at the downtown Bath Hampton Inn this morning.  After three months of waking up to the early sunrise and view of Seguin and the ocean beyond from our bedroom in the Keeper’s Quarters, it was a shock to wake up in a different place.

The Leeward taking us back to Seguin

The Leeward taking us back to Seguin

We had breakfast at the hotel and then changed into our bathing suits and took a soak in the hotel hot tub and swam in the pool.  It was a nice relaxing morning while it lasted but then we packed up to head back to our summertime island home.  After a brief stop at Cyndy’s to get water and chat with her for a few minutes, we got to the dock a

Ferry ride to Seguin

Ferry ride to Seguin

little before 11 for our ride on the ferry back to the island.  The ferry was almost full with 25 passengers in addition to the two of us and we enjoyed the slow ride over, talking with first-mate (or whatever his job is called) Brook in the stern of the Leeward.

As part of Ethan’s regular instructions to his passengers, he introduced us and asked everyone to give us a half-hour or so to get up the hill and unlock everything before visiting the museum, gift-shop, and tower.  He added his assurance that folks could get an extra-long tour if they helped us carry our stuff up the

Sailboat leaving Seguin with visitors that stopped in to see us.

Sailboat leaving Seguin with visitors that stopped in to see us.

hill.  After Brook took the first load of passengers ashore in the Leeward’s dinghy, we loaded up Hinckley with our stuff (it was tied to a mooring in the cove) and rowed ashore.  The oarlock pin came out again, a recurring issue, which made our progress slow as we had to go in stern first, but when we hit the beach, several visitors were there to help us unload and carry things off the beach for us.  It was nice to have their help because although we didn’t have much in the way of clothing after just a night off-island, we did have a bin and big bag of gift-shop merchandise and two water jugs.

Tuna sandwiches for lunch

Tuna sandwiches for lunch

Within twenty minutes or so, we were up top with everything unlocked and ready to host our visitors.  Two people stayed aboard the Leeward to fish but the other twenty-three came up including a large extended family here as part of the matriarch’s 80th birthday celebration.  The whole family was vacationing together in Maine where she used to live and the highlight of the week was the trip to Seguin which was one of her birthday presents.  This group took advantage of everything Seguin has to offer – some bought items from the giftshop, others hiked trails, most toured the tower, and all seemed to have a wonderful time, especially the birthday gal who couldn’t have been friendlier.

Visitors from Holland

Visitors from Holland

After most of the ferry group headed back towards the Cove, I took the big pile of towels and rags we used to stop the water from coming into the museum during the storm Tuesday night and later to cleanup and hung them on the line.  There were so many, they filled almost the full length of both clotheslines outside the kitchen.

Beets from the garden

Beets from the garden

Another couple came up shortly after Ethan’s group left and we thought we recognized them from earlier in the season.  They said they had come before when we were “newly minted keepers” in their words.  We were having a pre-lunch appetizer snack on the porch when they arrived and when Patty stood up to greet them, they insisted we finish our snack and went off the hike a trail.  They snuck back down the hill at some point because we never saw them leave and didn’t have a chance to chat with them again.  It must have been when we were inside having tuna sandwiches made from some tuna steaks we had left from dinner on Tuesday for lunch.

WP_20160814_18_52_09_ProA foursome arrived mid-afternoon including two young men and their father from Amsterdam along with a friend who lives in the area.  The two younger guys had a 5pm Frisbee game scheduled in Harpswell or somewhere not too far away but still they didn’t have a lot of time and their visit was brief.  We did go up in the tower and then Patty and I talked to them about Holland which we visited several years ago.WP_20160814_18_52_15_Pro

Later a group of six stopped on their way home from the lobster boat races (or as Patty calls them, the “lobster races”) northeast of Seguin.  They had swum (swam, swimmed?) in from their boat and were all barefoot and in bathing suits.  After signing the guestbook, I took them up in the tower for a tour – I think most had been here before but some had not but they wanted the abbreviated spiel which is what we did and then went straight up to the catwalk.

WP_20160814_18_53_06_ProThe last group we had was late in the afternoon when the wind was DSC00697picking up and big cloud banks were building to our north and west.  About half of the eight in the group went up in the tower and we lingered up there for a long time before Patty radioed me and said “the wives want their husbands down here NOW!”  The weather was looking sketchy and there was concern about the rest of their trip south past Cape Small and on to their destination.  One of the women told Patty she thought the guys were being a little too casual about the weather.  They all went down the hill and we later saw their sailboat pass Seguin to our east, heading south.  The boat was big and beautiful and we were able to get some nice pictures of it with our good camera and telephoto lens.WP_20160814_18_56_03_Pro

WP_20160814_19_05_42_ProIt was quiet after the last group left – I worked on the blog while Patty cleaned the Guest Quarters for visitors we have coming in tomorrow night.  We sat on the porch afterwards and watched boats heading in every direction.  It looked like storms had developed to the north and west but over Seguin it was clear and pleasant still.  Patty spied one large sailboat passing and with binoculars she could see uniformed staff aboard waiting on a few passengers.  Luxurious.

WP_20160814_19_21_18_ProAfter a beautiful sunset, Patty made pork chops (from the freezer, left from her sister Chris’ visit) for dinner along with sautéed beets and beet greens from the garden.  After the sun had set and we’d finished dinner, the winds died down and the temperature seemed to go up noticeably.  I had been wearing a hoodie since late afternoon and suddenly it was warm and humid.  I didn’t notice a wind shift but it must have changed to a land breeze bringing heat and humidity from the mainland.WP_20160814_19_22_06_Pro

Visitors – 45

Favorite Moment(s) – Riding back to Seguin on Ethan’s ferry

Sunrise – 5:33am
Sunset – 7:36pm

 

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