Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse was dark for a month after a lightning storm zapped its LED bulb. I met the Coast Guard electrician who told me the bulb was sent to Australia for repair! Yet on my one of my final days as a keeper, four men in blue coveralls arrived in an unmarked truck. Much less dramatic than other locations where they arrived by helicopter.
And just like that, we had a light again.
It was comforting to see it from my bedroom window once again.
I was very busy my last week, seeing the sites and packing up the house. Tim and I had visited all but one of the bridges on Acadia’s carriage roads. I made a final trip and saw the last of the lot, the Cliffside Bridge.
As its name implies, it is built into the side of a cliff. I couldn’t be sure it even crossed a stream.
Cobblestone bridge is the first carriage road bridge built and the only one made with cobblestones, not granite. It sits just outside the Park and is my personal favorite. I liked it so much, I crossed it on three occasions.
The second time was with Tim when we came upon this whimsical tree carving.
Complete with stick figures and a porcupine or beaver.
Then I cleaned house, packed up the dishes and linens for the NPS and gathered my pantry, projects and clothes and headed home.
I loved living on the sea’s edge with waves crashing beneath my windows but, ” There’s no place like home “. (Have I mentioned I played the good witch, Glenda, in fourth grade).
I just went up to the garage to take out the garbage. On my way up, I felt a squirt of water and saw an animal – hop – away. At first I thought it was a mouse, because we have had our share of them, but the “hopping” should have given it away. Apparently frogs pee on you, or any predator, when they are afraid. Only one foot and its croc was wet, no odor but yuck. I’ve been slimed!
No such thing as paradise, here at the lighthouse.
The bees around the lighthouse are busy pollinating the marigolds, beach roses and ragwort. My neighbor spotted a few bees at my hive. I suspect they are merely robbers but time will tell.
We took the Maine DOT ferry to Swans Island last week with bikes and had a grand time despite all the hills. One stop was the Burnt Coat Harbor Lighthouse. It shows what a community working together can accomplish. From about 2007 to now, they restored it to its current, pristine state. Well worth the stop.
After another hike, we drove Acadia’s Park Loop Road. We saw first hand some of the parking issues elsewhere in the park. There was a mile long line of cars parked alongside the popular Sand Beach.
We found some quiet spots anyway – not at Sand Beach
As summer rolls by, many beautiful boats pass the lighthouse.
They make us wonder, for a moment, if we would like another boat, besides Sparky.
Just for a moment.
The hammock offers a peaceful retreat from the crowds. There is usually a breeze and it rocks me right to sleep.
While the sunset is beautiful, we discovered you can’t actually see the sun sink below the horizon from the rocks, in summer. It’s a winter spectacle when it sets further south.
It has taken a little while to settle in. The keeper’s house was freshly painted with new furniture when we arrived. We spent the first several weeks in fairly intense NPS training but have learned enough about the park, its geology, trails, and carriage roads to advise visitors. Last week, we donned our uniforms and fielded questions.
Mostly people want to know : 1) how do you get to live here ; 2) where can I take the photo we see on the internet; and 3) where is a good place to eat lobster?
We are used to being “a bit more” isolated than this but are adjusting. As with many places in the park, there is not enough parking, which creates a backup on the road to the lighthouse.
We haven’t been up the tower yet but may get a chance tomorrow.
As with many lighthouses, there are beautiful sunsets and rainbows.
My to do list is getting shorter. We leave in a week to become caretakers at Bass Harbor Head lighthouse. If you are one of the 100,000! people who visit annually, please say hi.
The National Park Service acquired it from the US Coast Guard in 2020 and we will be its first NPS caretakers! Mount Desert Island is technically an island but we can drive there.
Time to clean the fridge. Meals become interesting as we eat through its contents.
Time to finish projects I can’t take with me. Actually, I will take my latest with me in its finished form. Back in March, I started weaving a queen size blanket made of alpaca silk yarn. I planned and calculated but still ran short of yarn 2/3 through and could not find more. I found some similar though, waited for it to be delivered, and made do.
I wove about 10 yards of fabric, cut it into three panels and, poof, we have a blanket to take to Maine.
Tim is in full form so I no longer am responsible for EVERYTHING!! Of course, he is already doing too much.
Sparky is sporting a new windshield but won’t be making this trip with us. He is strictly a lake boat. I found a great guy in the north country with a can do attitude and he did it!
We plan to bike the 45+ miles of carriage road in the park and I converted Tim’s bike to fit me, while he had a new recumbent bike delivered to Maine.
My car may look like the Beverly Hillbillies because I also fixed my roof rack just in case.
Not just any island, offshore please. Ideally with only two occupants. Yesterday made it perfectly clear to me why I love these opportunities. In between putting up window grates and storing the multitude of benches that now reside here, I stared in awe at the sky as it constantly changed. Black clouds brought a little rain and then moved to the north.
From the vantage point of a hill atop an offshore island, and safely onshore, clouds, gloomy skies and rain are spectacular.
And you need clouds and rain to form rainbows. As we got ready for dinner, Tim saw a rainbow out front. I went out back to see it and watched it with the current, resident peregrine falcon.
Until he found something to hunt and flew off.
This is the view I wake up to from our bed looking south to mile buoy. There is also the sound of the wind, bell buoys flag halyards.
We have not seen any whales but the boat traffic is interesting. With a Marine Traffic app, many times we can identify the boats and ships we see offshore. It makes them less anonymous as they drift or cruise by.
And of course it helps that Tim and I usually enjoy each other’s company and work well together. I couldn’t do this without such an excellent partner.