Saturday, June 24, 2017
Ok, let’s start out this post with the same old line, it is wet and foggy out! The forecast is for clearing skies, but I am not holding my breath for the sunshine they are predicting. The guests are happy and off exploring the island and that is the important part, but for them, I hope they get to see the mainland during sunset tonight.
I spent an hour up in the tower this morning because when there are west component winds there is no internet in the cottage and the only spot I can blog and post pictures is next to our Fresnel Lens. Brian had a honey-do list of sorts for our cottage, he fixed the 2 overhead lights in the dining room and kitchen as well as a few other odds & ends to make our living a little easier here.
After lunch, Brian went down to the engine house to continue his tinkering of the 2 push mowers in the engine house. His plan is to take the engine from the non-working mower (the transmission is stripped) and remounting it to the body of the other mower. This is what he loves to do, trying to come up with a hybrid of sort. Call us resourceful Yankees or cruisers but we tend to work with what we have for a better solution. When living on an island, you can’t run to the repair shop or quickly get a spare part, you make do with what you have. Progress is moving forward, hopefully by Sunday afternoon, he will have completed the operation.
I spent the early afternoon tinkering in the vegetable garden, everything is growing nicely and hopefully in another few weeks we can start harvesting, in fact we will have spinach later this week for salads. The sun did finally start to make an appearance, yeah! I headed down to see Brian’s progress and to convince him to help carry up another water container to the cottage. As I arrived down to the cove, the guests and Brian were all starting to head up to the top because we could see a rain line moving out from the mainland. Brian and I got the new water carrying system set up and started the walk up the hill.
As we got about half way up, we heard panicked shouts from the guests for us to hurry, there was water pouring out of the ceiling. Sure enough, a water pipe burst in the ceiling of the museum and was pouring hot water on the floor at an alarming rate. It is a good thing the guests are good sports and resourceful, they grabbed empty containers from the closet to catch a lot of the water and after we shut off the water to the cottage, the ladies helped me mop up the flood. Brian ended up finding the pipe and fixed it within a few minutes. The big problem on the island is plumbing pipes are not sweated together when they break because of the fire hazard, so they are repaired in the marine fashion with reinforced marine plumbing hose and clamps, but the clamps can come lose easily and a whole mess ensues. There was a lot of laughter and retelling of other plumbing fiascos in our lives and the result was no permanent damage was done and Brian and I faced another minor mishap without issue.
As our plumbing emergency was winding down, the cloud line passed over the island (without dropping an ounce of water) and gave us a spectacular view of the cloud formation. Weather is the best source of entertainment on the island.
The rest of the afternoon was very relaxing. Hot showers finally for us and sitting down for reading and knitting.
One of the things that keeps me entertained on the island is the ship traffic either in view or on the VHF radio. Weekly we have two cruise ships pass the island leaving Portland. As I was sitting down to knit, I heard the MS Independence announce their departure from Portland on the VHF. Usually in about an hour we will see the ship pass the southern point of the island. Another app on the iPad we play with is Boat Beacon, it is an inexpensive program to watch the ships move electronically based on AIS, Automatic Identification System. Commercial vessels are required to have this system on board and allows other ships to identify them as well as to give information of speed of travel and direction. We have the recreation version on our sailboat which we use a lot in shipping channels and when we sail on overnight passages. The iPad version on Boat Beacon lets us feel like we are back sailing, so hopefully more pleasure boats that pass the island turn on their AIS so we can identify fellow cruising boats. The MS Independence appeared on Boat Beacon and I grabbed the camera and dogs and went down to the Whistle House to get some fun pictures of the ship as it passed the island. Simple but entertaining.
We set up the sunset cannon for our Saturday night ritual of celebrating the end of another week on the island. The guests went up to the tower platform to watch the sunset as Brian and I awaited 8:25p to set off the cannon and bring down the flag on another day!
Guests today – 0
Guests total – 132
USCG – 6 (I hope this number grows through the summer, such nice guys to bake for)