Wednesday, August 30, 2017 – our last day off island
This morning will be our last Wednesday scramble of our season on the island. Ethan is picking us up at 7am and we will have about 3 ½ hours to get everything done to return to the island at 11am before the wind and seas start to pick up for the next few days. We brought a lot of stuff down to the engine house last night because we were planning on taking most of our things off island this morning so when we leave on Sunday, we should just have to grab some food items, Pickles and a duffle bag.
To add to today’s fun, our friend Tom is driving up from Connecticut this morning to come spend time with us on the island. The original plan had been to spend one night but I did call him last night to let him know the weather is looking as if Saturday is the first day a boat may be running him back to the mainland. It was funny listening to his response as a sailor, the winds don’t seem to be that big of a deal. It was like our response at the beginning of the summer, but now we know to factor in wind direction, wave height and the tides on the Kennebec to figure out how our crossing will turn out.
Brian and I were ready and the best part of today was we did not need to get water from Ethan’s which already saved us about an extra 45 minutes in our morning. The scramble this morning includes breakfast, laundry, a few groceries and a haircut. We got a hold of Tom to verify he was on time and back to Fort Popham we went. As we were travelling back, Ethan gave us an extra 30 minutes to play and I decided it was time for me to finally go sand dollar hunting at Popham Beach. Tom and Brian played friend catchup while I diligently searched for little sand dollars. My search found me 5 little dollars, so different from the one 4” ones I find on Cumberland Island and the Bahamas! One of my sand dollars was about an ½ inch across!
We loaded everything onto the boat and off we went on a very sporty crossing to Seguin, within the first 10 minutes of the boat ride, Tom now understood how all factors need to be considered before taking this boat back and forth. We also needed to land the dinghy with big swells and high tide with everything we brought back including Tom, it is always and adventure surfing in on top of a swell trying to land safe and dry on the beach. Ethan left us with acknowledging Saturday may be the next day he was going to make it back out to the island and it may be the day we need to make our final departure, Sunday the swells are picking back up again. Saturday is the only day within the next 5 days with a forecasted sea height less than 2 feet.
We made it to the cottage with the few things we needed to bring back to the island along with Tom, 2 bags of clean linens for the guest quarters and a new box of inventory for the gift shop. It is always fun showing someone new our little island, it never gets old. It makes Brian and I realize how lucky we have been to be given the opportunity to live out here as part of our crazy life!
By 4pm, I had decided it was time to start making the jam with all the blackberries I picked. I reread the recipe and verified I had all ingredients and canning supplies I needed to make this work. I have never canned before and I am a little nervous about it but I will have an audience of 2 who like to ask millions of questions and offer advice when it may not be needed! As I started to measure out the berries and mash them, we heard voices on the front porch, believe it or not we had visitors! They arrived in the cove for a short visit and to pick blackberries, we did mention to them about a small craft/hazardous condition warning that was going into effect at 5pm for the next 36 hours and our cove was not a safe place to be in any type of swell. They agreed to take a quick tour up the tower, pick berries from the North trail and head out. Brian took them up the tower and Tom and I went back to the kitchen to work on the jam.
The canning process was a lot of fun and we have a lot of jam to show for it. It was very satisfying hearing the pop of each mason jar top when it was pulled from the boiling water! Jam for everyone! And yes, if I knew how easy it was, instead of freezing the extra veggies from the garden I would have canned them for this winter on the boat, live and learn.
Again, it was another quiet evening with a great dinner with an old friend. I guess we will just have to wait and see what tomorrow will bring.