Every day for the past 5 months we “do the rounds” at Schoodic Institute. We walk the campus and make sure all is well: all the doors are shut, the lights are off and water isn’t leaking anywhere. Up until now, it was often dark and icy when we walked the mile and a half around the grounds. Now that the clocks have sprung forward, we get to do it in the light. And sometimes just around sunset.
The other night was spectacular.
We couldn’t get to the point in time to view it over the ocean but what we saw was mind blowing anyway.
Even a shed looks striking in this light. That’s the gym, where Tim works out most days.
And then on the way home, I found a tribute to Tim and Lynne (T & L) in the grass.
The park’s way of saying goodbye as our days here draw to a close.
I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me that this might happen, we all knew it would, but it came as a total surprise to me. I had painted during the day until my hand was a claw and quit work and walked to the point for sunset. It was windy and cold and I kept trying to tuck in under the cover of rocks while I waited. The days are already growing longer, sunset is at 4:00 pm.
I’m reminded I have to return to this site at high tide, and when it’s windy, to see the waves crash in this cut. The ground covers catch my eye, especially since I spend so much time looking at my feet when I walk on rocks.
But back to the sunset.
Here’s proof that the sun really is a star. Every shot I took captured a six pointed star.
I hiked around the point, still trying to keep out of the wind, and after I found a stable place to stand, I turned around and was stunned to find this handsome fellow.
What a treat. Full moon should make our night rounds easy, no flashlights needed.
We had a short stay on Seguin this year but it delivered plenty of joy. The trails were in great shape and we walked them all.
We dripped in fog for days – not a good time to try to dry newly spun yarn or laundry. A gale came through with winds of 40 mph. We dined out aboard a sailboat and we tucked the island in. The lens sparkled brightly even with its new solar powered LED light.
Friday, our last full day on the island, began with fog, which turned to rain, and ended with double rainbows at sunset. What a treat.
We left the deer at home to finish eating the rest of my garden. They’ll have to pass on the geraniums though. These came from Seguin at the end of a season a few years ago.
Tim suggested we drive through the White Mountains to Maine. Then he took a nap. He woke up for the hairpin turn of the Kancamagus highway.
We enjoyed a leisurely drive and made it to Bath, ME in time for my French zoom class. I am confident Canada will let us back in one day…It was fun to have a little time to roam the town.
As predicted the wind lied down by Thurs and we took our favorite lobsterman’s boat with our gear and food to the island. The new Yeti cooler performed as advertised.
Getting the gear up the hill is always a chore but Cyndy from Friends of Seguin Island helped and it went easier than I remember. Maybe it was a good plan to backpack and build up legs prior to this trip.
And here we are.
This year, through individual contributions, Friends of Seguin Island raised more than $100,000 to convert to solar energy. And it works, even in this foggy spot.
The Island had the same caretakers for the last two seasons, Debbie and Chris, and they kept it in great shape and made several major improvements: a spanking new generator shed for the spanking new generator; a plank walkway in the North trail’s swamp; a new interesting trail and a new bench on it. . Some of this was done last summer, when the electric cable failed and they had to run a generator 4 hours a day. Hats off!
Here’s to a few more beautiful sunsets in my happy place.
Yesterday was so clear, we saw Mount Washington, 86 miles away, most of the day. It shone at sunset even with a lazy shot from the dining room, looking out past the lighthouse.
Two seals washed up in the coves earlier this summer. In addition to the cute little, live baby seal we saw on our first couple of days, there has also been a large, dead, harbor seal in the cove. With today’s full moon, I thought it might go out with the high tide. No luck. Midnight’s high tide is higher so my fingers are crossed. The birds have been scavenging it and it is quickly decomposing. There has been an “Unusual Mortality Event” this summer with hundreds of seals washed up on beaches in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine. Many have been infected with an avian flu and/or seal distemper.
I called Fish and Wildlife just to report it and the biologist I spoke to needed a photo to be able to document it and count it. We have been giving it a wide berth for many reasons but I approached it for a photo, which is not included here. Instead, look what I found on the driftwood right next to it, a seal!
Today Tim got me to paint the Engine House, despite my procrastinations. Tim has done all the scraping, which I despise, ( I don’t despise Tim’s scraping, I despise scraping) and lots of the painting, and I have done lots of painting. My hands and wrists are sore. But we want to get as much done, hopefully all the white, before we leave. Looks pretty nice already. I can’t let it interfere with my knitting though. For you knitters out there, today I cut a steek in a sweater, which means I purposely cut a sweater I am knitting down the middle.
The lighthouse dome shines after this summer’s paint job.
It has been a long, cold winter. Much of the early season had temperatures too cold, for me, to comfortably play. The mid part had some nice snow and we were able to ski right from the front door. Then there was a melt and freeze, late in the season, which turned all our walkways into skating rinks. That’s when I keep my micro spikes on my crocs so I can get to the hot tub without breaking a hip.
This week had a glimpse of things to come. The temperature rose to the 50’s for one day and the river’s ice melted, happily without flooding our road. Here’s the view upstream.
Then we had a sun filled day, which warmed my heart. A mackerel sky predicted the next day’s warm weather and rain/snow.
Human and others. Fall migration has begun. Seguin Island is loaded with Northern Flickers. They are kind of bashful and elude my camera. Here is one sitting on the sunset bench.
Monarch butterflies are starting to flutter through. I spotted a mink and my siting was confirmed by 3 young men in the know. Apparently it caught its own ferry here, log, big wave? Some other critter nibbled on my bag of flax meal. The island has been without mice or rodents but at night, once the light is out, the kitchen fills with crickets. I had to go back in and turn on the light last night and had to dodge at least 15 crickets on the floor. Tim insists they ate my flax. Hmmm.
Fair weather has also brought visitors and it is a delight to share this magical place with others. It brings joy to all who see it, especially us.
The bathtubs are shining by Seguin standards but you might dispute it if I posted a photo so just imagine pristine tubs. Being the good lighthouse keeper’s wife, I also deep, deep cleaned the refrigerator. On Tasmania, I took unusual pleasure in using the old floor waxer to polish up the linoleum.
Sunrise and sunset keeps happening. The sun is setting 18 minutes earlier than when we arrived 2 weeks ago. I can’t speak to the sunrise but I have caught it on at least a couple of occasions. Yesterday was one.
Looks like I have to deep clean some outside cobwebs.
This morning it rose behind the clouds.
Here are a few indirect sunset scenes.
This morning I am literally waiting for the grass to dry so I can hop aboard the Gravely mower and shear the lawn.
We’ve had a chance to walk all of Seguin’s trails, which are in beautiful shape. I spend a lot of time looking at the ground and came upon this handsome devil.
Beyond its striking size and color, check out its mouth at the top of it. It looked like a plastic disc but its about a cm wide and definitely part of the caterpillar. I am pretty sure its a luna moth caterpillar. Sadly I won’t be here long enough to see its adult form.
I think these little things we get the time to notice are the best things about our time on islands. I’m also on the search for a four leaf clover, which Tim says he has never seen. I remember many hours spent sitting in fields looking for them when I was a kid with some success. We’ll see how it goes.
Sunsets never disappoint. Seas remain rough, visitors are few and we have settled in.
The lighthouse and quarters look spiff no matter how you look at it.
We’ve been there and gone. Home was nice for a while. These turkeys thought so too.
I provisioned mostly at home. Look at this colorful fruit display. I complimented the produce staff at the local Hannafords.
I guess the dragon fruit I first saw in Washington is the latest craze nationwide. Supermarkets and their wares are pretty much the same now across the country. And Tim Tams are readily available.
We beat the weather and caught the ferry to Seguin Island with a group of merry makers. The seas were rough but the landing was calm. It’s a good thing because we dinghy all our food and clothes and Tim’s gigunda keyboard ashore. We have added to our dry bags over the years and everything made it dry and intact. We’ve gotten here with wet clothes and once had to bob for our apples in the cove. So with all precautions taken, the landing went fine.
Gale winds and big seas are forecast through Friday. It began yesterday and we had gusts to 40 mph with waves crashing on all the ledges and the east side of the island. That didn’t stop two hardy families from coming ashore. They leisurely toured the tower and then went off to hike the north trail. I went back up to the top of the tower when I saw one of the mothers running back to the lighthouse looking very serious. Then everyone was gone. I went to try to look at the cove to see if something had happened to one of their boats or if waves were breaking across the mouth of the cove or if someone was injured on the trail. But before I got there the mom came back. I asked her if all was OK. Indeed it was. She wanted to tell the whole group to join her on the north trail because there were BLACKBERRIES! Ah cruisers.
The island is in great shape after a season with hard working keepers. Trails are cut wide and low despite hosting 2500 visitors over 60 days! And there was delicious homemade ice cream in the fridge and two bottles of red wine. And the garden is still producing tomatoes, green beans and squash.
I had forgotten the work I had done at the end of last season. I painted 3/4 porches around the house and repaired the pump house door. They all look spiffy. Now I’m figuring out this year’s projects. We have been asked to give a talk at this year’s island fundraiser so we are working on photos from our 5 island caretaking gigs. Should be fun if the weather allows us to leave the island. We’re back to checking weather forecasts several times a day. Island living. For now, we are marooned until at least Friday. Just the way we love it. And we have all the food we need.
Mount Washington was visible our first day back and we had a beautiful sunset. Then the rain came.
Lots of things make me feel small but let’s start with Tim – and his friends.
We had a wonderful visit with Tim’s childhood friend and his wife. Lots of great conversation and laughs while we shared the island with them. But look at me! I’m a little person in the group.
The eagles may not be bigger than me but they carry themselves so well.
The sky dwarfs me. I’ve taken a new interest because we now have to provide twice a day weather reports in preparation for a burn later in the month. We have to estimate the cloud cover; make a subjective observation, objective. But if you hold your arms above your head and imagine the diameter of a circle, you can estimate the amount of cloud cover in your little world.
We also have to report whether or not there is fog.
One day had little cloud cover but lots of fog. Imagine that.
The seagulls look down on me from their perch on the roof.
Not only am I small, I am outnumbered: 80,000 birds to 1 human (really 2 if I include Tim).
This old tree knows how to stand alone.
These colors remind me of a sweater I have started.