Before I start this Blog, I want to let you know that from here on in the Blog will be a little different.  As our time here on Seguin accelerates to the end, what I share will be different.  My style of writing takes time.  It’s not elaborate, but it is definitely me.  I will do my best to share me, but what’s really important to me from here on in is to maximize our experience, live in the moment and be present.  I’m sitting here typing this particular week on Saturday Aug 20th.  It’s been a busy month already as we crossed the 1000 visitor mark.  Our son Colin arrived yesterday and is here for two full days.  In between meet and greets and tours, I will be spending as much time as possible with him and his experience on Seguin.  I know you are all saying, “Carol, I get it, go enjoy these last few weeks.”  But I don’t want to leave you behind.  Thank you 😊

Sunday, Aug 7th –   Well my notes already reflect this shifting tide.  I have only a few short notes!  It’s a beautiful day, wind out of the East to start.  Maybe that will blow the little biting flies away!  Only time will tell.  Time to do a little stretching.  The pic is my view while I stretch.  Check out that beautiful blue, blue sky!  The first visitors of the day were Lindsay and Jason and their very patient pug.  Given the day, we’ll likely be busy.

Our next tour was a group of 5 from Cozy Harbor.  They were Aaron, Nate, Emma, Kerry and John.  I’m not sure the order of the names matches the picture order as I haven’t paid much attention to that!  A lively and engaging group, some have been here before but not all.  Well time to run down to the Cove for something, but the way back up I see that blue sky above with the contrast of the tram trestles (or “bents” as they are sometimes called), the sky and the vegetation.  However, the real point of this picture was to share the terrain where MITA cleared!  Again, Kudo’s to the team of volunteers that spent their day helping to maintain this treasure – Seguin!

Cove is looking a little light for 11:21 on this great day, but that can change! Well here is our next group of four.  My notes don’t say where they are from, but look at those happy faces -they are happy to be here!

Next we had a group of 6 come through.  Turns out his mom was here as a young woman (wife of a keeper) and made a planter that we have in the museum.  Her name was Dorothy Hart and here is a picture of her son holding the planter!  She was stationed here with her husband 1955-1957.

Well, here we are at 3:30 and the Cove is empty!  No time like the present to just take in the day, the view and the calm!

Then it changes! The weather didn’t change for us, but folks to our west look like they were potentially getting a storm!  Check out Steve’s pictures of these thunderheads!

Monday, Aug 8th – Woke up to a very different day.  Absolutely NO wind!  We’ve never had that.  Steve went to check the Cove and no one.  Time to look around and get a few house tasks done.  I did some bed sheet inventory work labelling the closet where they are stored in the guest quarters.  Also took a look at all the towels as they sometimes move around and since we’ll have a busy month of friends and family, would like to be ready for them in advance of their arrival.   We also took the opportunity, since it was soooo hot with no wind, to pack up a duffle of cold weather clothes that we’ll not need anymore and bring them ashore this week. That means our time here is waning and I don’t want to think about that just yet!!!  I also started a new “starter” with my rye flour.  Not sure if I’ll make one here on the island, but the one in the fridge didn’t look so great! Then I prepped all the veggies for making Ratatouille later, made a cucumber salad, focaccia bread and more crackers.  Definitely a house day.  Steve spent most of the morning vacuuming around all the dust and mortar from all the roofing / banging, etc.  We decided it was a good time for some lunch. 

Then out of nowhere, a group of 16 comes up the trail!  It was about 1:00 and the day was still pretty weird.  The wind had picked up and lots of clouds, a good Maine day!  They came from the Morse Mtn area.  We did two tours and it was great fun and they all had a blast!

After they left, the weather continued to deteriorate. The wind was shifting in all directions and the fog was rolling in. It hadn’t started raining yet but it was chilly.  We decided to get out of the house for a little walk. We were bundling up a little, pants, socks and hiking boots.  Seems like a good time to collect some blackberries out on the North Trail. We found a couple of amazing spots just loaded with blackberries!  I’ve had them in the past and they have always been a little tart, but holy cow, these were amazingly sweet!  You can tell when the little bumps on the berries look like they are ready to explode, then they are sweet.  And like any berry picking, there is always that one branch just out of reach that looks like it has the most perfect berries! Good thing we had on our boots and jeans as we dove into the thorns to get these yummy berries!!!

We decided to keep walking all the way out.  It was just that kind of day to explore.  We walked up to the vista on the North Trail, and we couldn’t see any land.  Another day where we are ‘socked’ in!  Since we were now out in the open with no real protection from the trail, the wind was blowing, probably 25-30 mph! 

As we turned around to walk back, at one point due to the elevation changes, you could now see the tower.  Next to it there is a pine tree that I use to point North during my tours on the catwalk.  You can see that lonesome pine tree in the picture, but we were never able to find it as we continued to walk back in.  Guess it’s not that close to the actual trail.  And here’s our collection of blackberries we picked in less than 20 mins!

Then here she is, the Tower and house looking south as we came by the helipad, back home! Came into our cozy spot and cooked up the focaccia and started to cook the ratatouille.  Burning propane today for sure! We had to run around and close any open windows as the wind keeps changing direction and the rain was starting to come in.

Dinner was shrimp with homemade pesto, the ratatouille and some focaccia.  After this entry, I have learned how to spell ratatouille correctly!

Tuesday, Aug 9th – Up early this morning, around 6:15 and down to the Whistle House to post the blog for Cyndy.  It’s a little windy and still a little foggy.  Had to run up in the Tower to take another picture for the blog…. Sometimes as I’m writing, I say, oh, I need a picture of that and it’s best if I go run and do it right then!

As I walked around the catwalk, cause I can, I noticed a boat leaving the Cove.  You could start to see the clouds breaking up a little too as I looked a little further towards the NW. 

Then we took a walk to the Cove to see if anyone else is there and took these pictures of the trail. Looks a lot different after all our visitors, compared to back in June.

As we got down to the Cove, we noticed Dean is back. We recognize his boat and kayaks.  We also noticed a mooring ball was missing in the water.  We ended up finding it on the beach, looks like someone put it there as it was up pretty high.  We walked to the vista on the Cove trail so we could yell to Dean. He shared that he believes the other boat brought the ball into the beach.  Well, being down a mooring will make the weekends a little crazy as people are expecting 5 moorings plus the Coast Guard one.  I started cleaning the kitchen area (floor, fridge, stove, etc).  Probably not going to be a busy day for visitors.

Dean came up to the house around noontime and we invited him in for a cup of tea.  We sat and talked for a few hours about every topic under the sun!  It was fun having “company” in our home away from home.  It was like having one of the neighbors over.  We learned about his trip since he left us here back in July.  He is a very learned, well-spoken, well-read person with an amazing life.  He shared several very colorful stories!

I went back up into the Tower to look out and see if there would be any clearing later on.  Doesn’t look like it anytime soon. We shared about the blackberries on the North Trail and he headed off to pick some.

We moved onto dinner time.  We had lamb kidney chops, but sorry no picture today!

Wednesday, Aug 10th – Today Betty arrives!  One of my long-time best friends who currently lives in NC.  However, she is on her way her from Wisconsin, where they have a family camp, after dropping her twin sister at the Chicago airport!  Today is our shore day, so the plan is for her to meet us in Bath and come back with us on Ethan’s boat!  Our tide overnight was HUGE as we are very close to the full moon which also means lots of seaweed on the beach!

We did our usual run around, only today Steve made a stop at the chiropractor – he had a little hitch in his giddy-up!  While he was off doing that I had the chance to check out the consignment shop on front street.  Been looking for a belt for some of my shorts.  No luck but did find a pair of shorts and a cute top.  It was fun to walk around, like I lived here! After groceries, we headed to the Marriott Residence right on Rte 1 as that is where we planned to meet Betty.  Right on que!  From there we went to Winnegance for lunch.  We always have good food and service there, but today they were running behind a little – not sure why.  We had enough time but felt a little pressure to snarf our food so we don’t keep Ethan waiting. I was riding with Betty and Steve was in our car.  After he dropped me off at the Residence, he went on to see Garden Jacquelyn – jackpot again!  But the real bonus in this weeks bag was a picture that Little Ruth drew for us.  It was a lighthouse, with a house and a man and a woman – how adorable.  We put it up on our fridge as soon as we got home!

When we got to Popham, it was low tide – rats!  We thought we would have to lower our stuff down by rope, but this time Ethan pulled up close to one of the ladders.  I handed bags to him as he was standing on his roof, then he handed to Steve.  That worked very well!  No rope and everything made it down in one piece!  The pictures above were from our ride in.  We got our dinghy and were able to bring all three of us and all of our stuff in one trip!  Once we landed and brought up all our stuff, we sat for a beverage on the front porch so we could give Betty her official welcome and orientation to the property.  And here is the pic of Little Ruth’s drawing she made especially for us!

We spread out all our produce on the kitchen table as I usually need to do a little inventory to make sure we know what we have.  This picture show’s some of Jacquelyn’s produce, some of ours from our garden and then the purchased stuff (like cherries and corn).  I love looking at all the yummy veggies!!!  Dinner was salmon with the ginger chutney, quinoa with roasted veggies on some greens with shaved parmesan, along with a few oven-roasted tomatoes!

Thursday, Aug 11th – A little cloudy, no real wind and low tide again.  Full moon is actually tonight.  Another snail making his way somewhere and check out a little branch with pine needles on it.  We don’t have any trees like that here, it must have come a long way!  So much goes on here, you just need to look for it!

Walking back up, check out this view of cobblestone.  It was only 7:16 a.m.  how pretty!  Anyone getting tired of these photos yet!  Even though they are of the same area, they are different every time!  After breakfast, we decided to see how the blackberries are doing hoping we can get enough to make a blackberry crumble!  Here’s Betty picking some.  We also walked down the “Cove Lookout” off the North Trail.  This little offshoot of the North Trail is it’s own micro climate.  It’s all different here, pine trees, ferns, damp, lots of moss growing and a definite aroma which is wonderful.    Here is a little air plant growing on one of the trees. I feel like little gnomes should live here!

Once we came back, Betty helped me with the new load of inventory Cyndy dropped off.  Cyndy had already bagged and organized all of it.  We played around with a few arrangements of the clothing and putting out a few pieces so people can see the sizes.  Here’s a picture of it all done!

We had a couple of visitors come up for a tour a Dad from Five Islands and the couple from Charlotte, NC.  Steve took Betty for a walk from Cobblestone to Cove.  When I was done with the tour, I walked down to the vista off the South Trail and took their picture. 

Then I walked down to the Cove to see if anything was happening there.  This way we can see what might be next.   Humm, another boat there, so probably another tour in my future. By the time I got back up top, I noticed our blue schooner coming back in.  Jeffrey the lead was here with co-lead Robin and their crew of 5 this time.  Robin was particularly enamored with the tour.  Turns out she is from Worcester, MA (near where Steve went to college). 

While I gave them a tour, I asked Steve to take down the Welcome sign outside the gift shop / museum.  It’s in need of some touch up.  It will take a little while as there will be several coats of different color paints.  Here is the before picture.

Another group from the S/V Aloha from Gloucester, MA.  These guys were great, so much fun!  Hippie, Ellen, Kathy and Tom. More on them below.  After the tour, we hung a sign on the house door that says where we are just in case and headed out the North Trail with Betty.  We walked all the way out to the Geodetic Marker on the far end of the trail.  We were only here once before but the seagulls didn’t like us then, but now everyone has had their babies and most of them are flying.  The middle pic is the view North and then the view back towards the Cove.  Boat to the left is the schooner.

The plant in the picture on the left is Night Shade.  It’s very pretty and has the delicate deep purple flowers with a touch of yellow hanging down from the center. I don’t think I’ve included that in a photo already.  I sometimes add a branch of it to my little vases I put out when we have guests in the guest quarters.

Here’s a pic of the Cove around 5:30. We’re heading back down to get our lobsters out of the “lobster car”, the cage thing that is tied to one of our moorings.  So we rowed out in the Cove.    We yelled over to the schooner to see if they wanted a couple of pics of the group from the water.  We thought that would be fun for them.  Betty did a photo bomb as I was starting to line up the photo – silly Betty!  Here’s the pics of the crew.

Then we rowed over to the Aloha (the last tour group we had).  They invited us aboard for snacks and a beverage.  Our lobster car was on the mooring they were on. Here’s a pic of the group again on the boat and then a side view of the boat. Very spacious!

We brought our lobsters up to house.  Dinner fresh steamed lobsters and cold broccoli salad is served!  Betty made blackberry crumble!  Holy cow was it good.  Should have taken a picture.  A pretty simple dessert which is always the best when you have fresh fruit.  Watch for a pic in future post as I’m sure I’ll make this dessert again or at least until the blackberries run out!

Friday, August 12th – We are all up early today as it is helicopter day!  Jim of Maine Helicopter will be bringing out our new shingles and taking the old ones back. So down to the Cove as some FOSILS volunteers are coming over to help with today’s effort.  Super low tide! So low that Hippie on the S/V Aloha said he touched bottom a little bit!

As the group is coming in, I look back at the boathouse and there is some beautiful reflection on the clouds as the sun is coming up.  We’re not usually up this early or down the Cove this early.  So peaceful and calm.

We all walk up from the Cove and get to see an infrequent sight – the sun is rising in the East and the full moon is setting off to the West.  Within about 10 minutes, we hear the helicopter coming to the island.  His first trip is to drop off his “guy-on-the-ground” person that will be talking to him during the operation as they drop off the new and pick up the old. I see an infrequent opportunity to catch a picture of the house and Tower with the sun coming up and it reflects off the vegetation and provides some additional Crayola colors in the foreground!

Steve’s captures a beautiful picture, from the perfect angle, of the helicopter with its first delivery, an extension ladder and the contraption that attaches to that ladder that brings the shingle bundles up to the roof, along with the sunrise! As you look at the pictures can’t you just hear the thump-thump-thump-thump noise of the helicopter?

Here is the equipment being “let-go” from the helicopter and the first bag of old shingles being latched by the mechanism to be carried back to shore.  And so it begins.  Max load he can carry is 800 lbs. This process went on for a while.  Once a bag of new shingles were dropped, we pulled the bundles out, put them in the ‘sled’ and moved them to various locations around the house closer to where they will be used.

The picture on the left above is from the west side of the tower and boy did those rotor blades look close to the Tower!!!  I was getting nervous, but no one else seemed to be bothered.  Then I walked around the front of the house, like where you come up from the trail, and now as the picture on the right shows, he is not as close as I thought.  Phew!  Now I could breathe easier!

Next, I decided to go up in the Tower to see how it would look from there.  Just another view, only three more bags to go.  By 8:25 a.m. he was flying into the helipad to pick up his “guy-on-the-ground” and take him back with him.  He was done.  We had all the shingles distributed around the house.  Now the fun begins as the workers will begin the installation.  Oh and here’s Rick giving me a ride back in the ‘sled,’

Around 11, we had a couple groups of ‘3’ come up for tours.  One group was Hank, Bob and Beverly from Bustins Island, ME and the second group was Kate, Michael and Kristen from Five Islands and Portland.  Their picture is from inside the museum.  The roofers were setting up and began working just before lunch.  The three of us (Betty, Steve and I) decided to take a walk on the South trail.    The picture on the left is almost all the way out on the South trail.  As I looked closer, I saw something move (look just to the right of the light green algae puddle)!  I just zoomed in and sure enough there was a 1st year seagull there.  Their coloring blends so well with the surrounding rocks – you could barely notice him!

From this point, I took two pictures from where I was standing.  The first one was looking back towards the shore (almost looking North) and the second one was looking almost  due South.  Really beautiful – such an expanse of just the ocean – gives you a true sense of our little island in a BIG ocean!

Well now that we’re all hot from walking and being in the sun, we stopped at the house and Steve and BE put on swimsuits and we headed to the Cove.  I didn’t bring a suit and going in up to my knees was plenty to help cool me off!

When we got down to the Cove, we noticed it was Pam and Don’s boat on it’s way into the Cove.  This would be their 3rd visit.  Once they tied up, Pam came out on deck and we waved!

While they were jumping and splashing around, I continued to look at the beach and today I found two more little claws for my “tiniest claw” contest!

Well, we all headed up to the house.  Betty and I headed off to pick some more blackberries.  I wanted to make sure I can get some more to make a future blackberry crumble for dessert!  We had chicken stroganoff with peas and rice.  And of course, we finished off the crumble she made last night and we finished the whip cream – put one on the list for next shopping trip!  At this point we were all a little tired since we had been up so early, so off to bed.

Saturday, Aug 13th – Today’s weather started out a little weird.  Very clear at the waterline but lots of clouds, sea was flat, wind out of NNE (not good as that means the annoying little flies again)! Roofers walking up with some additional wood they need to lay on the angle brackets on the roof to provide a standing surface from which they can install the shingles.  Also here is a picture of the new shingles.  They are like a mixture of gray and brown flecks.  I think it will look nice.

Tours for today started around noon, a little late for a Saturday.  First a group of three – Kent, Laurel and Anna.  Then Ian and Donna who were here back in late June. Two women, Tammy & Jill came up for a tour.  They were very intrigued by the Tower and very engaged in the tour – fun and easy going. Then Cal and Katrina pulled in with a group as Betty is going back with them when they all leave around 2:00.  While doing a tour for a group of 6 – I could see from the catwalk “Gratitude”, the boat Betty was on, heading to Popham – Bye Betty!  ☹

Another group of 6, new to the island! Steve did their tour (pic on right above is the group in the museum) while I grabbed a quick bite of lunch about 2:30.  Then I did another group of 6 – getting the picture that today was a busy day!!! I guess 6 is the popular number today! Then a group of 14 came up and we broke them up into two groups.  Below is a pic of the Mom’s and the kids!  Time to shift gears to a kid-friendly tour….Sometimes when I take a picture, I say I’m doing a normal picture first followed by a silly picture.  Thought I would use the silly picture of this group.    Next up was Scott and Mary who arrived about 5:00.  Well how about a tour!

At this point, the tours for the day seemed to be done so we walked down to the Cove.  As soon as we turned the corner at the top of the trail, we could see the mast – HOLY COW.  The boat was huge!  When we got down to the Cove, Scott and Mary were on the beach.  I said to Steve, it looked like the catamaran was unsure of the mooring they were on and we’re thinking of leaving.  However, our dinghy was out on a mooring because Roofer AJ had to buzz back to the mainland for something….. So Scott offered to take Steve out to the catamaran to let them know they could tie a stern line to the Coast Guard (CG) mooring to help keeping them from shifting towards the rocks.  They decided to stay, Scott began to bring Steve back to shore, then the ‘cat’ yelled out to ask if the guys could help him secure the stern line.  So back out Scott and Steve went to bring the line over to the CG mooring.  Then we saw another sailboat coming in and the only mooring available was the one with our lobster car on it (which is a little close to the rocks for some captains). So, for the third time, Scott took Steve out to our dinghy and to move it to the one with the lobster car so the boat coming in could take that mooring.  Just as they were about to tie it off, AJ came back into the Cove.  Phew! Scott and Steve didn’t even tie off the dinghy, they just handed it to AJ for him to use to come in. All of a sudden, such a flurry of activity!! The Captain of the S/V Aurora 2 (catamaran) was very appreciative of the help and offered a glass of wine to thank us.  We decided to head out and ultimately Scott and Mary came over to join us as well!  What a fun group!  They were a group of 4 – Vincent and Anne (from Philadelphia now but originally Paris, France), Amelie (from Montreal) and Carole (from Paris, France)!!! Of course, there was all the usual questions back and forth. Amazing hospitality, shared some snacks and some red and white wine.  Anne gave us a tour of the boat.  So here’s some pics of the boat, Steve and Scott coming in for the last time, the group, etc.

While we sat there the sun was setting and the clouds and sky became so beautiful. It was getting late, time to head back up.  We all said our goodnights.  They said they would be up in the morning for a tour! We’ll say our goodbyes then!  As we came up and turned the last corner, oh my – the sky was a blaze of color!  We have NEVER seen a sunset like this – it was spectacular!

Tonight’s dinner was Steve’s special meatloaf using ground chicken with quinoa and asparagus. All yummy!!  Trying a new method for cooking my crackers, here’s a pic of one big cracker and then when it’s done, I just punch my finger into it and they break into random sizes.  And to wrap it all up, the moonrise!

Well it’s certainly winding down. I’m posting this on 9/1. Thanks for hanging in there!. I’ll have a few more posts so stay tuned!

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