Sunday, August 28th – No pictures of the Cove this morning as we are in Topsham, ME.  Here are a few pictures from the Black Lantern B&B where we stayed.  Our breakfast was awesome, a delicious homemade meal as good as if you made it yourself! Judy and Tom were very accommodating with a few special requests we had!

After breakfast we went for a walk around historic Topsham and then across the bridge over the Androscoggin River towards Brunswick. We came to this very large building called the Cabot.  Looks like it was turned in an Antique Mall full of vendors and their wares.  We opted to not go in as our car was FULL to the brim with stuff! Also, during our walk, we noticed this interesting bug on a plant we walked by.  Even back on the mainland, it’s amazing what you can see if you just look! Walking back over the river we noticed the Salty Dog Brewery, a little too early for a beer!

Once back at the B&B, we packed up our gear, loaded up the leftover pizza and headed down to Portland.  We did a little grocery shopping at a Hannaford down there.  Oh my, it was huge! We were a little overwhelmed to say the least.  I noticed this same phenomenon when we were on our first caretaking gig in the U.S. Virgin Islands.  As you can imagine, not everything we have here is available in the islands and if you see a box of Triscuit crackers then buy them as next week there may not be any.  This was also the case here, although not quite to the same extent.  We did most of our shopping at Shaw’s.  If they didn’t have a brand we were looking for or a product, you make do.  But when you return to your normal shopping store when you return home – I am astounded by the variety provided to shoppers to the point where I get overwhelmed in the store as there are so many options! I digress!

We drove around a little and found a place for lunch, the “Miss Portland Diner.”  Lots of great reviews and it was packed.  Looks like they have added on another dining area as well as an outside eating space.  We didn’t have to wait long and really enjoyed our lunch!   Next we drove to the hotel where we are staying so we could bring our refrigerated food inside (we did have a small cooler with us), along with our stuff. We are staying in the Marriott Residence on Commercial St near the waterfront, stores and lots of eating choices for later.

Finally, it was time to head to the airport, about 10 minutes away to pick-up Gary and Therese.  The airport was much smaller than I expected.  I was thinking it would be like Richmond, which is not huge but it has two terminals.  Needless to say, picking them up was a breeze and they were waiting outside in the pick-up area as we pulled up!  Back to the hotel to bring in their gear and decide about food.  We had a few snacks in the room (which by the way, plug for Residence is that many of them have a good size refrigerator in the room) and some beverages.  We let them get settled and started looking for our dinner place.

A few years ago, we had come to Portland to see some folks we met in St. Thomas. After we spent a couple of nights at their home on Chebeague Island, we returned to the mainland and went to Boone’s Fish House. I thought we would try this for tonight’s dinner! We walked to the restaurant, only to find that almost 80% of the menu was lobsters and the prices were out of sight.  The four of us were planning lobsters while on the island so we decided to get a few apps and share.  Plus, we understand what the lobsterman are getting paid for their catch compared to what everyone is charging in the restaurants.  It’s “seaway” robbery.

After our apps, we headed to Ria Ria an Irish pub.  We sat upstairs in the back restaurant area which was bright and didn’t look like an Irish pub compared to where we walked in.  However, it was perfect as we could hear each other (the downstairs pub was loud).  Again, we each chose some appetizers.  Here are some pictures of us just having a fun/silly time.

After here we headed back to the hotel, we sat in our room and shared the presentation we made last night.  I know they have seen a little bit of the blog but this was definitely a view into what the island is like.  Then it was time to head to bed as we needed to be back at the floating dock in Popham by 10:00.

Monday, August 29th – We headed down to breakfast about 8:00.  They have a nice spread of options for breakfast.  Everything from eggs, sausage, to bagels, muffins, oatmeal, granola, cereals, yogurts and all sorts of toppings!  All yummy and again I didn’t have to cook!  Two days in a row! Besides meeting Ethan in Popham at 10:00, Steve’s cousin Mary Rose and husband Frank and my sister Diane and Angus (the dog) are headed our way from Five Islands with Cal & Katrina to spend the day with us.  Frank just retired and they are on a 7-week retirement tour in their truck/camper.  They live in Ohio and are covering all of New England and down to Pennsylvania before making their way home.

We have prepped all sorts of food, etc. to have a great celebration of just being together. We’ll just see if we have visitors – but it will all work out (it always does). Made it to the dock on time and ready to roll!

We made a big salad with all sorts of toppings, cooked a bunch of chicken on the grill for wraps and some cheese, cold cuts, condiments – making you hungry? This is the dining room with our buffet!

Everyone made a plate and then headed out to the picnic table.  So far, no visitors. Time to eat before some show up! Mary Rose and Frank brought nuts and chocolate covered blueberries and raisins for dessert along with some of my homemade oatmeal cookies!  We had such a great time chatting, eating and laughing.  The conversation covered so many fun topics and everyone had a good time.  A few visitors came up but we were able to give them tours after we ate.

Here’s a normal and silly picture of all of us.

Sitting at the picnic table and Steve giving a tour to Frank and Mary Rose

While we ate at the picnic table, I shared my favorite toast.  “The time to be happy is now, the place to be happy is here, the reasons to be happy are all around us.”  You can copy that for your next family dinner – I came across in a magazine years ago and it’s the best!!!  Well, I guess all this fun has to end.  The clock has a way of ticking by.  Here is the Cal & Katrina crowd heading out.  You can see we have three boats behind them.  I see tours in our future!

By 3:00, the rest of the boats were all headed out, time for a splash in the ocean, at least for Gary & Therese! Ooooowee the water is still chilly.  I’ll walk into my calves but that’s it for me! 

We decided to walk out on the Cove trail, so we could wave goodbye to everyone.  While we were there, we saw a seal.  I texted Katrina, but she said it looked like it had a pretty good cut on one of its fins.  We walked a little closer and in my best “mom” voice I was encouraging the seal to make its way to water.  It was moving but having a tough time with one hurt flipper.  Luckily though, he finally made it and swam away – yay!  After we finished, we headed back to the welcome area and saw this spider web. You can see so many things if you slow down and take your time to look around.

Because we were home free from a tour perspective, we headed off to share with Gary & Therese (from here on in, G&T) our bounty of blackberries bushes on the North Trail.  They have become quite plump and have lasted much longer than the blueberries did.  This was the branch that had been hanging over the trail since the beginning of the season.  We purposefully left it there to see the berries grow.  Unfortunately, someone broke the branch so it wouldn’t hang down into the trail, but it seems it lasted long enough for the berries to ripen!

We sat on the front porch for a while just talking and sharing. Gary was hoping to get some drone video of the island but winds were in excess of 20 mph.  At that speed, the drone won’t even take off! As sunset time was approaching, we opted to head up into the tower to take a few more pictures of the sunset combined with the reflection of it in the lens. Here’s a picture of the sun reflecting back and then a picture of G&T.

The best picture of all is the next one.  Gary has been working on taking his time lapse photos and then overlays all the photos into one picture.  He set up his tripod and the timer for 2 hours tonight to take a picture of the tower, with the very tippity-top of it centered on the North Star.  Since we rotate about that axis, the stars should make a circle.  After taking the pictures, sorting through all of it, he decided 1 hour of time lapse was the best perspective and here is that photo.  One of us must have walked into the kitchen during his time lapse as the light shows it was on!  All it needed to do was be on for one snap and then it becomes part of the final image.  Very cool!

Tuesday, August 30th – Another gorgeous day here on Seguin.  Here’s Gary and Steve taking a morning selfie to capture the view, then a walk down to the Cove to see whose there – just one boat, for now!

As we were walking back up the main trail, we noticed a couple of “new” lobster buoys hanging off the tram.  Judging by the writing we believe it was from the Georgetown lobsterman celebration that took place in the Cove on Saturday while we were onshore. Headed back up top for some light breakfast nosh. 

A little after noon, we decided we’d walk the Cobblestone Beach trail, but first it’s a good idea to take a peek at the Cove to see if we have any boats.  As we were walking around the Cove, I took some more pictures. Remember, the clock is ticking down and we leave in 5 days.  I want to capture everything!   Here’s my artsy photos of the Cove.

Then we found Steve talking to a visitor, who had found the Adirondack chair by the Donkey House. He was just sitting there enjoying his lunch (some sardines ….). He was taking a break from being on the boat.  He didn’t want a tour so we headed on the trail to Cobblestone Beach.  When we got there, we took a little time pointing out a few items to G&T.  Like the vein of quartz that is on the face of the cliff looking back towards the Tower and how there is a valley in the land where the tide has come in and left all sorts of driftwood including some pretty large pieces.

As we turned to walk closer to the waters edge, we noticed a seal.  He looked either hurt or sleepy.  He was a little way up on the beach so it didn’t look like the tide brought him up that far.  As we got a little closer, we couldn’t see any type of injury so we figured he was just sunning himself and we continued on our journey east along the coastline.  I love saying ‘oh and we walked the coastline’ around the island!  It just creates a very unique mental image for me.

I am intrigued by the “puddles” we come across when we take this hike.  The water is so clear and the growth of the algae is different.  It must get ‘fresh’ seawater with the tide. The only way you can tell its water is because the adjacent rock is darker because it’s wet.  We had timed our hike to align with a rising tide as it makes it a little more interesting as the waves come crashing in.

We came back to the Cove trail and what did we do?  This is where you say “Check the Cove for boats.” If that’s what you said, you’d be right! Nope, no boat traffic, so we’re clear for a little while.  It’s around 3:30 pm. If any boats come in from here on out, they will likely be coming to stay the night.  We walked back up the main trail back to the house.  Not too long after we walked back up, we decided to walk back down and get the lobsters and some crabs out of the ‘lobster car.’ See how we get our exercise!  Up and down the main trail several times a day – “our existence is our exercise” (I love that mantra).

We suggested G&T go out in the dinghy to get them.  Of course, they needed to capture some of that on film for their adventure videos.  Have I mentioned they have a YouTube channel?  It’s called “Modern Recreation.”  Gary does a great job of editing and adding some humor to their videos. Therese provides the context of the video to share with the audience. Anyway, as you can see in the picture (it’s a little dark as the sun has already gone down enough to shade the Cove), Therese is taking pics while Gary is getting the lobster.  He yelled in and said, “this is harder than it looks.” We were laughing and making bets on whether “T” or the camera was going in the drink! Lucky for them, neither of them did!  Eventually they got the lobsters out of the car and into the bucket.  The crabs were a little more evasive to get out of the car.  Plus, when you put them in the bucket, they try to climb out!  Their little eyes are very focused on you and they raise their pincher claws up!!!!

Back to the house (aka up the main trail, again). I needed to finish my sign painting. The best place to lay this all out as opposed to painting down in the Whistle House was the museum.  I set up an area in the Coast Guard room.  It’s tough because I was painting three different colors and some on both sides.  Paint one side, let it dry, paint the other side, let it dry, next color – kind of like washing your hair lather, rinse, repeat! 

While I was letting the signs dry a bit, Gary popped in to check out the museum and the gift shop.  It’s a great little spot.  It’s the perfect size – not too big and not to small – just like Goldilocks said!  We looked at a couple of cozy hoodies and the Long Sleeve T’s but ultimately, he liked the unique ‘Vintage’ sweatshirts we had this summer.  The color was perfect and he loved the design. Made his Venmo payment and was on his way.  The Venmo process has been very lucrative this summer as it is allowing folks to make donations or payments in seconds and no one has to carry cash. 

We sat on the front porch a bit as it’s interesting to watch the shadow of the house grow as the sun is setting.  The picture on the left is about 6:00 and the on the right is about 7:00.  We can tell the wind is still pretty stiff from the flag and how far the rope is away from the pole.  Another night where at sunset it’s too windy for the drone.   Still have tomorrow night though…..

Time to starting cooking dinner.  We are cooking the crabs, then the lobsters. One of the things that has been great here in the house is it’s very well stocked with pots/ pans, utensils, etc.  Anytime we’ve needed something specific like a platter to serve our lunch buffet the other day or a pot to cook the lobsters, etc., they have one! Check out T’s excellent job in getting the lobster claw meat out in one piece! Way to go – she’s a pro and this is only her second time having lobster, she is from South Dakota – not a lot of local lobster there!  After we cleaned up our shells and the dishes, we put some oatmeal raisin cookies in the oven for dessert!  Whenever we have guests, it’s an excuse for dessert.  No diets this summer!  It was a lot easier to just put all the cookie dough I had left on the cookie sheet and make one big cookie!  Boy was it good – oh and don’t forget the whip cream.  We do have to start consuming all the stuff we have in the fridge!

After dinner we taught them the 10-dice game that Mary and Bryan had given us.  Everyone we have shown this to has enjoyed it because it’s simple with only a few rules.  Lot’s of walking, hiking and fun in the sun today but time to call it a night! 

Wednesday, August 31st – Well don’t stop reading this blog as today turned out to be a BIG day.  Not going to spoil the surprise, you’ll just have to keep reading!   I’m sure we were up around 7 ish.  The sun shines into the bathroom window, so we usually close the bathroom door to keep it darker.  The window in our bedroom faces South and we have a room darkening curtain.  We let the ‘kids’ sleep as it was a very busy week for them prior to leaving for here and we’ve kept them going with this and that.  Got to show them everything the island has to offer.  Looks like the weather is gorgeous again today and the wind is down.  Yay – Gary should be able to get his sunset video this evening. I checked my sign and everything was dry and I was happy with the result.  Back to handyman Steve to pull out the ladder and hang it back up.  The white really pops!  You might be wondering why I didn’t paint the Museum sign white and it’s because it was in pretty good shape paint wise so I left it alone.

We walked down to Cove.  Three out of four of us were determined to go in for a swim, cause how often do you get to go in the Atlantic Ocean off Seguin Island?  Not too many, so no time like the present! They all walked in then dove into the water.  Burr, even though the sun is out, the water is still like 62 degrees!  That’s pretty chilly!  We sat for a while on the rocks and enjoyed the sunshine, the view and being present, taking it all in.   In an effort to be present, I hadn’t taken any photos of them all in the water!  I remembered as we were walking up the steps from the beach to take one of the three of them.

When we got back, everyone changed into some comfy clothes.  Kids must have been tired as they crashed on the couch.  Being on Seguin can sometimes be exhausting! Rough life though, right? 

Well weather still looks favorable for Gary to take some drone shots at sunset.  We put on some shirts etc. and headed down to the Cove.  He brought the camera and tripod with him.  He wanted to take some video of asking Steve some questions about the gig, the island etc.  Well, and all together now – might as well see if there are any boats in the Cove!

No one’s here.  We just enjoyed the sunshine…. Oops then we saw a couple of boats.  We thought they might turn into the Cove, but they kept on their course and sailed on by. Within a couple more minutes, we noticed a pretty large catamaran headed our way.  And it just kept getting bigger, and bigger and bigger!

We watched them pull in and pick up their mooring.  I’m sure we waved to them – an appropriate welcome to the island. We decided we should start heading up as Gary was anxious to start getting is gear ready for the sunset flights.  Also, we figured it would be a bit before they had settled in and got the boat ready for the evening.  Still don’t know if they plan to come up for a tour or not.  We’ll just have to be surprised!

As we came up the trail, another pretty perspective of the tower with the early stages of sunset as it wasn’t even 6 o’clock yet.  Gary began to get out his equipment and was walking round trying to find the best place for the tripod and Therese put on her dress for the video.  We were just walking around in the kitchen doing some kitchen prep for dinner.  Last night with them on the island – but it has been a great visit having them here.  Everyone enjoyed the time and exploring the island together. Steve and I came out to see how it was going.  T-minus 15 mins and counting to sunset.  Just then, the Daren and Amanda from S/V Outer Passage (the large catamaran) came up the trail in walked toward the West where we all were. What a beautiful and unique vessel. 

We didn’t really get to chat much with them, how and why they are here etc. as Gary asked us, politely, to move over towards the side of the tower so we wouldn’t be in the picture.  Then he asked me if I could start the tour inside the museum – I said sure, that would work out fine as I can point to lots of pictures in there.  Then Steve headed inside too, to be out of the picture.  Director Gary had a vision of the view he wanted and we weren’t in it.  We didn’t give it a second thought as he only had this one shot to get sunset. 

I’m inside giving Daren and Amanda the tour, and Steve came in about 15 minutes later and said we could come out now as Gary had taken the shots he wanted.

Well, la-de-da and guess what.  Maybe because of what I’m typing, your getting suspicious.  I didn’t give it a second thought.  But this was all part of his master plan to propose to Therese!

Once I turned the corner by the tower, I could see the excitement on everyone’s faces.  Even Daren and Amanda were super excited!  It was amazing – everyone was surprised! In the picture below, if you look close, you can see Gary on the catwalk down on one knee (follow the grounding cable up to the catwalk). It was great Daren and Amanda were there as they took a picture of the four of us and then we had to take a picture of them!

Well, we were all a buzz and of course in hindsight, we should have thought something was up.  Gary had been planning this since before we arrived on Seguin.  They had been discussing getting engaged, but no specific timing.  As Gary would say, “Well how ‘bout that?”

We love Therese and are very excited to have her join our family!  Then of course we shared that we’d have to finish the tour tomorrow and had to go in and call all the peeps to let everyone know the good news.  She was able to FaceTime her parents and we called Steve’s mom.  Then Therese needed to reach out to all her girlfriends and let them know the exciting news.  We opted to not tell my Mom because we had planned for them to visit and see her tomorrow when they get to Woburn on their way to Boston, their destination for Thursday night. Their friends from San Diego are picking them up at my Mom’s house as the four of them have a wedding in Connecticut on Sunday!  If you haven’t experienced the power of the universe.  This was a prime example.  Gary had some tentative plans for the whole thing and it all played out perfectly.  The engagement, going to my Mom’s, spending the night there and then meeting their friends.  You just have to believe it will work out and it does!!!!

Even as I type all of this as we are on our way to see them in South Dakota (9/23 – I know but I’m almost done), I still can’t believe it all happened and it was so much fun to be part of that very special moment.  How lucky are we to have kids that want to be around us when an event like this occurs, we are blessed for sure.  Here is our sunset as we all went into the house to make our calls!  Oh and tonight’s Rabbit, Rabbit!!!

Thursday, September 1st – Today we head in for our shore day and we bring Gary and Therese to the bus to start the rest of their trip.  We were able to request our travel day today so we could bring them in and also start to bring in a few things so we won’t have as much to bring in on Sunday (sniff, sniff, our last day).  Oh my, it’s only a few days away.  I’m so excited and sad at the same time. Gary looks exhausted in this picture, but I’m sure the pressure, all his planning and ultimately the completion of his plan left him drained. Once they get on the bus, they will be able to sleep some more.

Here’s my Cove picture.  Steve rowing Gary and a bunch of stuff out to Ethan’s boat.  S/V Outer Passage is still there, but we’ll not be there to thank them or finish my tour!  Oh well, that’s how it goes.

Here they are as we leave the island.  The plan is to stop at Winnegance for breakfast as their bus doesn’t leave Bath until 10:10. They will take the bus to Portland Transportation Center and from there get a train that goes to Boston, but stops in Woburn.  That turned out to be pretty convenient! Guess we didn’t take a pic at breakfast!  But it was all good.  Therese and I split a breakfast that was a veggie bowl with 2 eggs and 2 pieces of toast.  It was a perfect amount. 

We got to the bus stop in Bath which is located at a particular store front on State Rd.  Here’s the very funny part though, oh my gosh I’m laugh every time I share it.  We’re at the stop and we have their luggage out and all together to make sure no one forgets anything, just standing there chatting.  10:10, 10:15, 10:20, 10:25, coming up on 10:30 and no bus.  So I jumped on my phone as I knew the train didn’t come as far north at Bath, but wondered where it started.  Turns out it started in Brunswick which is only 7 miles away.  If they missed the 11:00 train in Portland, they would have to wait 2 hours for the next one!  The train station was only 12 mins away and we had just about 30 mins before the 11 o’clock train.  We all agreed to throw the stuff back in the car and make a beeline to the train station in Brunswick.  Threw the suitcases in the back, we all got in with our stuff and back packs.  Steve backed out of the parking spot and when it was clear, pulled out onto the road. 

As we did, the two suitcases, 8 cans of diet coke and the 48 pkg box of Cheezits he got at the fundraiser all fell out of the back of the Subaru onto the road.  We forgot to close the hatch!!!  The soda cans were rolling everywhere and squirting soda, the luggage fell out but luckily didn’t open!  Fortunately, no one was right behind us and the cars coming in both directions, politely stopped and waited for us crazy people to run and pick up all the stuff.  We never laughed so hard and neither of us though to grab a quick photo!  Oh my, it was so funny!!!!! 

We all got back in the car and laughed the whole way to the train station.  Just another great story!!! 

There was plenty of time for them to get an appropriate ticket and I told them they would be able to get their $$ money back on their bus tickets.   What a morning!  We waved our goodbyes, threw kisses and once the train pulled away, we walked back to the car to go about the rest of our shore day! Holy cow – surely another day for the memory books!

And to boot, another friend of ours from Virginia, Caroline, is driving up this a.m. to come back out with us.  She was up in Rhode Island visiting her parents and REALLY wanted to come out and experience the island to see firsthand this amazing adventure we were having.  So, we did our errands, grabbed a quick lunch from Two Sisters Deli, which we split since we each had a good size breakfast but at the same time knew dinner wouldn’t be for a while.  Then we picked up a yummy kale tofu chickpea salad from the Bath Natural Market for Caroline.  We drove to the Marriott Residence in Bath and waited for Caroline.  She pulled in around 2.  I somehow missed her pulling in so we were both there for a bit before we found each other.  I hopped in her car, and drove us to Popham while she ate her lunch!

We both pulled in by the Fort, unloaded the cars and Steve and Carol went to park their cars.  We could see Ethan and he was cleaning the boat.  We moved all the stuff down to the loading dock and waited for him to finish.  He came around and picked us up a little after 3:00.  Here we are on the way to the island.

Once back in the Cove, first order of business was to help the volunteers with their stuff into the boat and then we loaded all our stuff and Carolines and made one trip to the shore.  Then up the stairs, regroup and up the trail.  I know I’ve type that so many times, but each time it’s different.  This time we were sharing with another close friend.  Her husband, Helmut, was bummed he wasn’t able to join us but he had just had knee surgery a few weeks ago and we decided the in/out of the dinghy and up the trail etc. would likely have been too much.   Next time Helmut!

Once we got everything up to the house and put the refrigerator stuff away, Caroline and I headed off on the North Trail.  She is only here till Saturday, so time is of the essence to show her everything! We captured some beautiful pictures of the sunset from out here as well as a picture facing due North.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen this view at high tide as there is like a pond in between some rocks.

Then it was on to dinner prep.  Making our Spaghetti Squash Mediterranean Bowls with Tofu Sausage crumbles (which is actually a recipe I got from Caroline), everyone’s favorite (honest). Then after dinner, guess what we played?  We taught Caroline the 10-dice game.  We chatted and caught up on some of her adventures this summer. It’s been a long day for everyone so off to bed we went.

Friday, September 2nd – Down to the Cove to check out status of boats and also to capture the weather for the day.  Another picturesque day, at least the morning is!  I’m down here at the Cove by myself and just like Wednesday, trying to capture a few last pictures. Not that they look much different than another other day, but I know I only have two more mornings. And the day we leave doesn’t really count! The view from the Clivus and today I walked down the Cove trail to the northeast view from the island. 

I actually took a panoramic photo of the coastline when you reach the end of the Cove Trail.  We’ll see how it looks when I post it. Looks pretty good I’d say!

Then here I have facing due east for a gorgeous view looking at sunrise.  On the way back, I took another photo looking up past the Donkey Engine House up the tram.

Well, time to head back up to have breakfast with Caroline and to get ready for the day.  We didn’t have any visitors until around noontime today so that was a nice break.  It is Friday on Labor Day weekend.  Wonder how many visitors we’ll have today.  We went up the Tower and gave it a quick sweep to make sure she was looking ship shape for the holiday weekend.  As I start at the top, I noticed some more unique rainbows from the prisms. 

We had a couple of guys come up just after noon and they were excited to be on the island and really wanted a tour.  They asked all sorts of questions and were intrigued with the history I shared. It was lunch time and I figured if we didn’t eat something soon, we’d miss or window of opportunity.  

The other day, my sister Diane suggested we take a picture of the two of us, trying to replicate the “American Gothic” from our perspective.  It was perfect since Caroline was here, she could take the photos of us.  Here’s some funny pictures of that effort and once we started doing it, the three of us couldn’t stop laughing!

By sunset, I was feeling like I needed to take this opportunity to head up the Tower to take a few more pictures up there. 

And of course, can’t miss the sunsets!

Saturday, September 3rd – Well, here we are our last full day.  I wonder how many visitors we’ll have.  I’ve noticed that the last few days that the flag was starting to fray along the edges.  I grabbed some red thread and Caroline and I started to stitch away.  Here are some photos of us diligently working to finish the task before someone comes up the trail!  We look like Betsy Ross and her sister Sarah tending to the flags.  We have a new flag, but I thought we can repair this one so it will last the rest of the season.

Business started to pick up.  We had a group of 4 from Portland, then a group from Christmas Cove (Julia, Callie, Henry, Bart, Melissa, Bridgett).  Julia was especially enjoying the tour.  When they left, she asked me several questions about what I did before the lighthouse, etc.  We chatted for quite some time.  She really loved the tour and told me she thought I did an excellent job in delivering all the historical information.  As she turned the corner to head down the trail, she yelled back to tell me that she was a speech consultant!  Well, I’ll take that as a compliment.

Before you know it, it was time for us to head down to the Cove as Cal and Katrina were on there way over to pick-up Caroline.  She needed to head back to RI as she had plans to have dinner tonight with her brother, Mother and Father. It was a quick visit but she was able to walk all the trails either with us or by herself. We went down to the Cove and previous visitors (Scott and Leah) were here again staying in the Cove and spending time on the beach looking for sea glass. Here they are searching for that special piece and Caroline leaving in the background.

We headed back up the trail and shortly after we came back up, so did a group of 4.  Charlie and Karlene Romano from Saco and their friends Lori and Mike from Pittson.  They were funny, very relaxed and enjoyed the tour. It’s enjoyable for me to give a tour to folks that enjoy learning about Seguin history.  Well the day was drawing to a close and again, the reality of our departure tomorrow was definitely on my mind. 

Took a picture out the front porch at the flag with a unique splash of different clouds and a little while later one of the two of us as our last sunset was upon us as well as the Tower.

In addition, Bill and Yolanda were here again to enjoy a sunset. This time I remembered to take a photo of them! I think they were here 3 or 4 times over the summer. Nice folks!

Our last sunset

The last sunset with Mount Washington

The last sunset reflection on the Tower

Here we are. Our last night.  I continue to work on reading the book a Short Bright Flash.  I came across a quote from Robert Lewis Stevenson whose Father, Thomas Stevenson, designed a holophotal lens, which would bend all of the available light into the central beams. Thomas Stevenson billed the idea as the ultimate perfection in lens design. The French replied that they had been working toward precisely that goal for years. This rebuff from the French was not the biggest disappointment of Thomas Stevenson’s career, a moment that came when his only son told him he wanted to be a writer instead of a lighthouse engineer. “You have rendered my whole life a failure, ” Robert Louis remembered his father yelling at him. Thomas had dragged the boy to the worksites on remote northern skerries in an effort to get him interested in lighthouses, but all that would come of it were vivid settings for the shipwreck scenes of his later novels. The family business lingered in his poetry as well, including an 1887 ode to the Skerryvore lighthouse:

...But there

Eternal granite hewn from the living isle

And dwelled with brute iron, rears a tower

That from its wet foundation to its crown

Of glittering glass, stands, in the sweep of winds,

Immovable, immortal, eminent.

(this is an extraction from a Short Bright Flash, by Theresa Levitt, Chapter, “Race to Perfection”)

Our Last Day Sunday, September 4th – A beautiful last day. I walk down to the Cove, not carrying anything but my phone. Again, capturing the early morning sun’s reflection on Seguin.

Then walking back up the trail, one last view of Cobblestone from the Vista on the South Trail.

Had to take one last snap of the log book where we keep track of our numbers each day.  Looks like as of yesterday we’re over 1300 visitors!  That’s amazing!  I feel like it’s been a pretty productive season.

Around 11, things started to pick up a little bit.  We had this group of 6.  The woman on the left was Maria.  She had been here before over the summer and I actually ran into her on the day I me Leeli for lunch at Mae’s!  And as luck would have it, Leeli and Jim are on the way over with a few of their friends since this will likely be the last time I see her for a while.   We were trying to plan a boat trip with them to Monhegan tomorrow, but the weather does not look good, too windy and potential for rain. 

Next group up was a group of four from Portland. As I started their tour, I was having a tough time, and I started to tear up. They asked why, and I explained today is the day we leave this amazing gem of an island. The reality of leaving was setting in.

Leeli and Jim showed up with their friends, “the Partners”, and the brought their lunch!  Louise, Ridge, Marc, Turi, Jim and Leeli.  After their tour, we sat with them for a little while at the picnic table.  She brought us a ginger cookie to share that she gets at the weekend farmers market. She remembered how much we liked the first one she shared with us months ago. It’s so good!

I was enjoying this last day and maybe, just maybe this would be my last tour.  What a great way to end my “tour of duty.”  I said my goodbyes or really I said my “see you later.” Well, this picture was taken about 1:00.

Things changed all of a sudden, we had group after group coming up.  We still needed to wrap up a few things and pack the cooler bag, etc.  It actually got a little crazy.  Finally, we had to share with the visitors that it was our last day and we had to stop the tours to finish packing.  I felt bad but no one seemed to mind except me. 

Here’s my last picture of the season of the House / Tower.  Those are the last bags on the steps that I need to carry down to the Cove.  Steve is already down there as I’m sure it will take a few trips out in the dinghy. It was probably just as well that I was busy because I think if I had stopped, I would have really started to cry.

Next thing I knew, we were on the boat heading back to shore one last time.  But today, we rode in luxury! Joining us were Cyndy, Tom and his wife Katherine, Rick and the friendly Captain Jeff and his wife, Catherine.

We got back on “contiguous land” as a friend of mine likes to say.  Everyone helped us unload from the boat and Rick helped us load the car.  Then we left Popham for the last time heading to Boothbay Harbor to stay with Diane and Dave for a couple of nights.

We stopped at the Boothbay Brewery for a beverage to “cheers” our efforts this summer and toast to all the wonderful people we have met!  If you’re reading this, THANK YOU for making the summer of 22 a special one for both of us.

I plan to write a short blog for our next couple of days (as I am getting a Seguin tattoo) and our journey home.  That’s my way of delaying just a couple of more days, that it’s over.

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