Maine ~ Stonington

Stonington Harbor, Maine

 

It got dark fast, and chilly for August, and we have hunger. It’s only a mile to Stonington along the shore, past lobster pounds in the protected cove behind Moose Island, past hundreds of lobster boats anchored in the harbor – some new, most well used, some derelict. Houses climb up the hill above the harbor like skyboxes, new businesses in old rambling clapboard buildings line the waterfront.

 

 

 

 

 

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The Sea is Indifferent

Sometimes the is sea is benign, sometimes it is dangerous; always it is indifferent.

Gunnar Hansen

I was given a good book recently by a friend at a poker game. Tom worked for many years at a well-loved used bookstore near the university. Toots, his wife, recently retired as a librarian. They’ve never owned a TV, to my knowledge. Needless to say, they are good sources of good books. The walls of their house are insulated with them, on shelves stacked floor to ceiling.

Tom still wanders into any used bookstore he passes, disappearing for hours I imagine, and at yard sales skips the rusty tools and goes straight for the tables where the books are kept. With so much experience sifting, he has a knack for finding unusual gems he knows will interest me.

This one, Islands at the Edge of Time by Gunnar Hansen, is out of print; but used ones are still available on Amazon.

 

 

It covers all the types of barrier islands along the East Coast, from Texas to Maine, with a special emphasis on the ones I know best – where my parents live between Charleston and Savannah, and of course the Outer Banks of North Carolina, Ocracoke and Portsmouth Islands. The way they are formed, how they shift and change shape constantly, etc.; all of which is eminently interesting if you have spent any time on them.

But it also explores the history of these barren and tenuous places, the people who are drawn to them; and the special feeling of desolation and power surrounding you there, where wind and water and sand alter the landscape constantly.

 

Canaan Valley ~ Thomas, WV

At The Purple Fiddle, carved from a single log

 

The big loop is nearly complete at Thomas, less than 3 miles up the road from Davis. Senator Davis bought huge tracts of land here in the late 1800’s when it was still wilderness, then built towns and railroads to extract the resources. He named Davis for himself, and nearby Thomas and William for his brothers. Davis was the timber depot, Thomas was coal.

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Maine ~ Bucksport & Castine

School on the Commons ~ Castine, Maine

 

From the airport in Bangor to Stonington, at the southern tip of Deer Isle, should take about an hour and a half. We spend four hours doing the same, winding along the Penobscot River, stopping in towns along the way, generally assuming the least straight path presented.

First stop is Bucksport, where there’s a farmers market still open. Terri, very excited, insists we stop, and goes in for provisions. She gets caught in various eddies, long chats with local farmers, and does not resurface. I wander the main street, still a little too travel-frazzled for conversation. We had reserved a little Toyota Corolla rental car in advance, but by the time we arrived those were all gone. So, for the same rate, they gave us the only thing left – a fancy new Cadillac. This would normally be a good thing.

 

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Deltaville Maritime Museum ~ Chesapeake Float 2016

 John England’s Chesapeake Deadrise under construction.

  

The rain moved in overnight. However, “rain” does not adequately convey the phenomenon of water falling from the sky at the rate of 3 inches an hour. It’s like there’s a crew overhead bailing out the clouds with 5 gallon buckets.

Good news is the boom tent is keeping the interior dry. So there’s that. People slowly venture out in foulies and wellies, collect on the front porch of the old store with hot coffee to watch.

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Chesapeake Float 2016 ~ Cocks Crow

 Sunrise at Freeport Landing

 

Dawn is very noisy. There’s a rooster. A rooster very near, like next to my head. The sun is barely up, and he is hard at work. Also, something else making a racket I can’t quite place. A sheep? No sleeping through it, rise and shine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lightning #2833 with the boom tent

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Global Shipping, Visualized

This is fascinating. An interactive map of all commercial shipping worldwide in 2012.

 

 

You can pan and zoom to different parts of the world. Turn on color codes corresponding to shipping types for a dazzling visual effect. Play the audio/video for a quick tour and narration of what’s going on. Really interesting.

via Kiln via The Big Picture