Deal Island: parting shots

We greeted the next caretakers, Graham and Leonie, helped them unload and get settled, and then made a pasta dinner. It was a lively evening and our first glass of wine in 6 weeks!

20150606-080231.jpg

I know the feeling when you wave goodbye to your last visitors for the next few months. Bittersweet, but mostly sweet.

We arose early Thursday and departed Deal Island on the Strait Lady. It was the calmest and fastest crossing to Flinders Island we ever had. We saw the sun rise on the cliffs of Deal,

20150606-080611.jpg

a last view of the compound,

20150606-080440.jpg

sunrise to the east of Bass Strait,

20150606-080811.jpg

And sunset from Flinders Island looking west.

20150606-080910.jpg

20150606-081132.jpg

A perfect ending to a fabulous three months. We met lots of interesting, hearty, brave people, took good care of the island and each other, didn’t break anything nor have to be airlifted for emergencies.

Maybe we’ll be back again.

Tidying up


Me and the Deutscher. We haven’t given the lighthouse equipment names but this one goes by the manufacturer’s name. The Deutscher is an industrial strength lawnmower. He and I took a walk yesterday to mow Winter Cove, which has about 6 km of mowable track and lots of hills. It’s my favorite track to run, although I covered more distance mowing because many areas had to be covered three to four times.

When I got back to the compound, I headed down to the jetty and caught the sunset.

Today I stripped the bathroom floor to reseal it. I had to leave a puddle of the stripping solution on the floor for about ten minutes. When I returned, to my surprise, this skink was lounging in the puddle. Before I could get my camera, it hopped aboard my makeshift mop and I escorted it outside. How did it hear about the puddle, I wonder.

Securing the compound

20150501-103201.jpg

The caretaker’s cottage on Deal Island is surrounded by two layers of fence. The inner fence surrounds the two houses.

The outer fence’s circumference is about a mile long and has many gaps, which allow rabbits, possum and apparently penguins in.
How do I know this? I have closed gaps in about a half of the fence and set snares to trap rabbits, which overrun both the outer and sometimes inner compounds.

My count so far is 3 rabbits (cacciatore and polenta tonight), one possum and one penguin, both of which were released unharmed. You can imagine the rest.

When I finished I headed down to the jetty. I had considered s swim but the sun was setting and it was glorious, but cool.

20150501-102624.jpg

20150501-102657.jpg

20150501-102724.jpg

Me and my Ute

20150416-220556.jpg

I mowed the airstrip the other day with the little Daihatsu Ute and a tow behind mower. Airstrip is a bit of a stretch. It is a relatively flat area, which has been used in the past as an airstrip but us primarily a wallaby feeding ground these days.

20150416-220313.jpg

20150416-220326.jpg
Then today, we had a phone call from someone who wanted to land here. We couldn’t authorize it and advised them to contact Tasmania Parks and Wildlife. We never heard anything but a small plane buzzed us today. It circled twice and gave us a wing tilt, then left.

I’ve been pulling sea spurge, an invasive plant, with the weedies who are here working. Yesterday we worked our way up a steep hill. It was sunny and hot so we had a nice swim before lunch in East Cove. Lovely.

Yesterday’s sunset was outstanding.

20150416-221319.jpg

Even on reflection.

20150416-221434.jpg

Sailing lessons

More specifically, sailing knitting lessons. Lesson number one. Save colorwork for calm moments. Multiple balls of yarn become a tangled mess when thrown into the cabin when all hell breaks loose.

Lesson number two. Time flies and you’ll never accomplish all you plan.

20140802-194436.jpg

Lesson number three. Enjoy these moments.

Scoured sky

Yesterday’s gale scrubbed the sky.

20131008-212627.jpg
Today was sunny, windy and a perfect temperature. We hauled the various commemorative benches to the whistle house, finished packing up the gift shop, after numerous purchases by me, and did my final weed whacking.
That left plenty of time for photo ops and knitting. I’m on my third climbing deer hat and am a little dizzy.

20131008-212844.jpg

20131008-212925.jpg
Then I shared the same sunset you saw but mine had a cruise ship on the horizon.

20131008-213027.jpg
S’mores for dessert and now I’m ready for bed. Good night, sweet dreams.

How far can I see?

If it’s clear and there’s a high pressure, at least 86 miles. Here’s our view of Mount Washington last night.

20131004-112541.jpg
It has to do with how high we both (Mt. Washington and Seguin Lighthouse) are above the earth. Wikipedia lays it out here:

20131004-112717.jpg
And here. If it was at sea level, we could only see about 30 miles because of the earth’s curvature but since we’re both tall, we can see farther.

I’m keeping a cricket and visitor count and they’re pretty close. I remember this from prior years. Every morning we find cricket(s) trapped in the sink. Total count thus far, 5; visitors: 16.

I gave up on a knitting a tomtem jacket, for now, and the games begin. First “climbing deer” hat in progress.

20131004-113325.jpg
The first one is in exchange for venison from my postmaster. We have the best post office. Once a package with only my name and town made it to my PO Box! Next I owe several to kids who actually asked for them last Christmas. I hear my needles clacking.

On a clear day, I can see Mount Washington

And I think it’s about 80 miles away from Maine. The skies finally cleared, after five days of rain and fog, and it was worth the wait. The air was so clear we could see straight to Mount Washington.

Mount Washington

We were watching the sunset from the catwalk of the lighthouse and then got too cold because the clear air is associated with cold air. Last night was in the 40’s and it didn’t get warmer than mid-50’s all day. We are very aware of the temperature since there is only one space heater in the keeper’s quarters.

We decided to watch the sunset from the lantern room, which is always toasty with the light burning, and then the optics were almost more interesting than the sunset itself. The original fresnel lens is incredible. It’s delicate and powerful. It takes a 1000 watt light bulb and amplifies and transmits its rays about 70 miles. It also turns a sunset upside down.

Optical sunset

Light and sunset

This last sunset photo is actually looking east! It’s a reflection of a reflection of a reflection. And so on and so on and so on.

Reflections