5 Nov 2016
Saturday night and home for just about 24 hours. What a great week we had! Just wandering New England without any definite plans. The dream I held for retirement before all the grandchildren started arriving!! There is too much to relate but somehow our last stop was in Cape Cod visiting Susan’s cousin Carol and her husband Bill. Very fun to see them.
I guess I last left you at Rangeley Lake in the Northwest of Maine. From there we wandered the highways and byways of central Maine toward the coast eventually finding ourselves at the lost civilization of Deer Island. It’s not a place you just happen upon but we did, and at the end of the road is a fishing village called Stonington. When you can’t go any farther without getting wet you will find a quaint and cozy bed and breakfast on the water which like everywhere else at this time if year had vacancies. After we settled in we were directed to the only restaurant in town that was still open. They really take the tourist season seriously.
We watch the sunset over the harbor with a glass of wine and as darkness falls we settle in for the evening. All is well. We awaken early, as usual, to discover we’re not on the water, we’re on a marsh, no not a marsh but a bed of rocks and dank seaweed with bouys and debris scattered haphazardly. Boats that were floating lazily yesterday are now tipped and grounded. It appeared to be the aftermath of a once in a century hurricane which apparently we slept through… or… the Inn was moved in the night, which we also slept through,… or… what we drank wasn’t wine at all…or…we were transported. The locals were remarkably calm in the face of an undeniably poor emergency response time and were of the opinion that “This too shall pass.”
Having survived the storm, it remained a beautiful little village, the price was right and we would have been content to hunker down here with a good book for a few days and observe life on the fishing docks; but weather and timing dictated otherwise. One of the few items on our agenda for this trip was to visit Acadia National Park. The visit was to include being at the top of Cadillac mountain to see the sun rise – this is the place where the first rays of the sun greet the US each day – and also to hike up the mountain. The weather was only supposed to be good for another day or so which required that we leave Deer Island, the best kept secret in North America, before we were ready.
I think it was Tuesday that we headed for Bar Harbor and an incredibly beautiful, sunny day it was. We arrived early and again found great lodging since we are seemingly the only tourists in Maine, grabbed lunch and enough wine to dull our senses, then proceeded to Acadia for an overview. There is a twenty-three mile loop through the park and you can also drive to the top of Cadillac mountain. The views were spectacular and indescribable in every direction and again we were alone on roads that in summer are jammed with traffic.
Wednesday morning found us up early and winding our way up the mountain through the fog in eager anticipation of being the first ones in the whole country to see the sun come up. We were among the first to arrive but as the time drew near a few other insomniac tourists arrived who had hitherto been in hiding. And there we waited, in the dense fog as the climactic moment came and went, wondering if there was some design to gather all the stupid people on a mountain top in the fog to then quietly remove them from society. Slightly dismayed we descended to discover that below the fog that capped that lofty peak we would have had a very nice view of the sunrise from our hotel balcony. This experience must hold some message appropriate for the travel guide!
This next part gets confusing. Now that we have driven up the mountain twice and most recently had no view, we are going to take a 4.4 mile hike up and down the same mountain. Am I the only one not seeing clearly here? It has become apparent that the number and degree of difficulty of our recent hikes are increasing in an inverse relation to the number of days remaining before the expiration of one of my life insurance policies. But being a good sport I tag along knowing that I will have a hiking induced view that will be double that of anyone else. Upon reaching the pinnacle, although several hours had passed, it was still socked in – no view! But it was a very colorful, bucket list event both coming and going.
Cadillac Mountain is a spectacular dome of granite which rises up out of the sea. This is a lot of bare exposed rock, and as the miles passed I could envision only thousands of granite countertops! Strange things occur to you as you slowly plod up a mountain. Having overheard many real estate negotiations, I understand the panic when a buyer discovers there is a high radon level in the home that they want to buy. After much back and forth, either a radon mitigation system is installed or there is a price reduction. These are the same buyers who will then install a radon emitting granite countertop! We are a strange species.
Speaking of being a strange species, if we want to delay becoming nothing but fossils we must face the reality that things are changing out there. Our predecessors set aside these vast natural wonders for us to enjoy. Let’s all do what we can to keep it for our kids and grandkids. If you didn’t have the opportunity last Sunday evening to see the National Geographic documentary “Before the Flood”, you can still Google it or find it on YouTube. I encourage all my followers to watch it. All four of you! Seriously, it’s time to get on board. As the Dalai Lama said, “If you think small things don’t make a difference, try spending the night in a room with a mosquito.” Or he said something to that affect!
What would you call the US if everyone had a pink car?…………………
A pink carnation!!
Until we meet again..