Surprise Visit

Thursday
July 21, 2016

When we got up this morning we looked outside first thing to see if Yogi, the one and only gull we recognized (by behavior) enough to know, was still perched at the edge of the lawn.  We were hoping not, that he had recovered somehow and was able to fly away.

Mitchell's brother-in-law, nephews, and niece on the lighthouse catwalk.

Mitchell’s brother-in-law, nephews, and niece on the lighthouse catwalk.

Unfortunately, he was still there and when I went outside to check him, I could tell he hadn’t made it through the night.  We were both sad and wished there was something we could have done but what?  Out here, not much.  I took him to a quiet little spot where I hope no one will see or disturb his remains…  Bummer.

After that melancholy start to the day, we did take our coffee and sit on the front porch for a few minutes before having our regular breakfast of fruit, yogurt, and granola.  Not long after we finished, our first visitors came up the hill around 8:45ish and included three adults and three kids, collectively from New Jersey and Connecticut.  One of the adults owns a home on a private island near Five Islands and brought the group over in his boat.  They checked out the museum briefly but were particularly interested in getting up in the tower and seeing the view.  After their tower tour, the headed back down to their boat.

Newly discovered donation box next to the trail map in the vestibule.

Newly discovered donation box next to the trail map in the vestibule.

We also went down the hill a couple of minutes later to clean up the old mooring ropes and chains that were left yesterday afternoon when we had six new ones put in.  I knew there were chains attached to the mooring anchors but was surprised at how heavy duty, and just plain heavy, they were.  Yesterday we dragged the old chains and ropes above the high tide line and today we found one more by the water’s edge since we were now at a low tide.  Patty climbed up on the rocks between the beach and the boathouse and I tossed the ropes to her which she they tossed up onto the deck.  From there, I went up onto the deck and pulled the chains up and Patty coiled them and the ropes in the boathouse.  Not even 9:30 and we worked up a good sweat but, because of Patty’s foresight, we keep our swimsuits in the Engine House next to the boathouse (Patty says ‘Thank you Cyndy for the foresight!).  A quick change and a few minutes later, we were frolicking in the ocean.  Ok, maybe we didn’t frolic but we did both go in all the way, squeal like little children from the cold, stand in the sun for a minute, then repeat.  It felt so good!

Small Point Summer School visitors.

Small Point Summer School visitors.

Yesterday when the F.O.S.I.L.S. Wednesday Warriors and Maine Island Trails Associate (MITA) volunteers were here, a lot of work was accomplished but we didn’t have a list of everything so we poked around today to see the result of their efforts.  The most obvious thing, which we did see immediately, was cutting back the tall grass beneath the length of the tram and in front of the house.  Brush along the length of the North Trail was trimmed back too.  Two historical areas, the former blacksmith workshop down by the Engine House was cleared further with trees cut down on the site and another area by the

SPSS visitors

SPSS visitors

Whistle House that we need to ask about because we’re not sure what was previously there.  The repaired and improved gift shop screen door was re-hung with some slats to protect the screen (we hope it will survive the daily use of many visitors going in and out) and planed down so it would close more easily.  The vestibule and parts of the tower interior got some fresh paint, and repair of the soffit on the Whistle House was started.  Impressive and we may discover more over the next few days.

New photos for sale in the giftshop courtesy of Dave Cleveland who visited us last week.

New photos for sale in the giftshop courtesy of Dave Cleveland who visited us last week.

After coming up the hill from our swim, I wrote a blog post while Patty raked out front where the tall grass was cut adjacent to the lawn and then did a little cleaning in the museum.  Afterwards, we had a light snack of pita chips, apples, swiss cheese, olives, hummus, and almond butter with chia seeds.  We knew Ethan was bringing a group today for sure because my brother-in-law Jeff and niece Kiki, and nephews Joshua and Jacob were coming for a visit.  They live in Virginia but are in Maine right now and decided in the last day or two to make a detour to Seguin to see the island (and us).  Patty stayed up top to tidy up the kitchen after our snack and I went down the hill to meet the ferry, thinking I’d walk up the hill with my family.  However, when I got down to Paco’s, I was surprised to see five boats in the Cove and a large group of kids sitting cross-legged in a circle by the info kiosk.  It was a group of 21 from the Small Point Summer School (SPSS) coming for a visit.  They accounted for three of the boats but there were two other boats and I could see the Leeward slowly coming towards the cove.  With the SPSS starting to gather their things to start walking up the hill, I decided I should do the same and watch for Jeff and crew from the top.

Shortly after I got to the top, Jeff, Jacob, Joshua, and Kiki came up the hill near the front of

Pulling of chain and rope from the old moorings.

Pulling of chain and rope from the old moorings.

the ferry pack and I was able to greet them and immediately take them to the tower for a tour.  I knew we were going to be super busy and would, unfortunately, not have much time to visit with them since they would only be on Seguin for a couple of hours.  I did have a nice, too brief, time with them while we were in the tower together and got a nice picture.  Patty was able to visit with them a little too in the museum and showed them our quarters before they went to hike the South Trail.  As expected, between the ferry, SPSS, and others, we gave non-stop tours, worked the gift-shop and museum, and visited with guests continuously until

Pulling of chain and rope from the old moorings.

Pulling of chain and rope from the old moorings.

almost two in the afternoon when our count was 76 (our highest number yet).  I did take a quick break before the ferry left to say goodbye and exchange hugs all around before our family left and Patty was able to do the same.

After the ferry and SPSS visitors started leaving, it was quiet and we started making some

That's chilly!

That’s chilly!

lunch when a family of F.O.S.I.L.S. members from the Philadelphia area came up the hill for their annual visit to Seguin.  They brought a picnic with them and said they were planning to eat before doing anything else and urged us to have our lunch too.  We had fish sandwiches with haddock from Plant’s Seafood that was leftover from our fish taco dinner along with some Pringles chips. I know Pringles are not really potato chips and probably have nothing good or natural in them but sometimes you just need some chips with a sandwich and Pringles can travel to the island in a backpack better than a bag of chips.  That’s how we rationalize it anyway.

Wow, that's chilly.

Wow, that’s chilly.

After lunch, the family of F.O.S.I.L.S. members visited the museum and gift-shop and several of them toured the tower.  Patty noticed that one of the slats in the new screen door had come off.  That door really takes a beating!  Patty moved the new slats from the outside to the inside where we think they’ll protect the screen a little better and will be less likely to come off again because they will be pushed instead of pulled.  That’s our hope anyway.  It’s so nice having the screen door and don’t want to lose it again.

Early morning visitors.

Early morning visitors.

The remaining visitors went off to hike the North Trail but would come back by the museum and gift-shop before leaving so Patty stayed up top but I went down the hill to start mowing the grass down there.  When the visitors went down the hill later, Patty came down and took over the mower and I weed whacked.  With that finished, and us being hot and sweaty again (just like this morning), we changed into our suites again and went for our second swim of the day.  It was low tide so we

Mussels in white wine, lemon, and cayenne pepper sauce.

Mussels in white wine, lemon, and cayenne pepper sauce.

had a nice, big, sandy beach but the sun was just below the ridge on the west side of the cove so we were in the shade.  Even though we were really hot, the water was still felt frigid to us non-Mainers and without sun, it felt even chillier than this morning.  But it felt good too.  We might have squealed again.

Back up the hill Patty prepped dinner while I

Mussels with rice noodles for dinner.

Mussels with rice noodles for dinner.

started a blog post.  Dinner was something new that Patty experimented with and turned out delicious – a keeper.  It was mussels from Plant’s Seafood that she soaked in corn meal (removes the sand) and then steamed with a sauce of garlic that Patty roasted first, lemon, cayenne pepper and white wine.  The mussels and sauce was then poured over a bowl of rice noodles.  So good.

Visitors – 82IMG_0787

Favorite Moment(s) – visit of bro-in-law, niece, and nephews to the island.

Sunrise – 5:06am
Sunset – 8:06pm

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