Wednesday, September 3, 2014

New Eng i Land 3 of...

For some reason, this musical selection seemed fitting for this much delayed post. Enjoy if you want to. 

On our Grand Maine tour we took a boat ride. One morning we all got up early and made a bee line for the town of Boothbay Harbor. I lived in Boothbay Harbor in 1987 and apprenticed for a potter there. Every so often I feel the need to return. The return however was to catch a boat to Monhegan Island

Monhegan is a Mecca of sorts for painters and writers. They go way out to sea to take in inspiration and soak in the solitude. The solitude is broken daily by three ferry services that dock and discharge a few artists and writers along with a few hundred tourists like us. Tourists wander the island foot paths and take in the charm of old Monhegan. Many just shop since shopping is relaxation to some. Most get back on the boat three hours after they get off.

The place is very picturesque. There are no cars here. There are however many 4x4 pick up trucks owned by the various guest houses and inns. They use them to ferry the guests to and from the ferry. I visited Monhegan in 1987 and thought very little would have changed. It seemed very different this time. When here then, the island seemed very disconnected from both modern society and the main land. Now both seem ever present. When here last, I felt I had stepped off the boat into the 19th century. The harbor used to full of lobster boats, now there are just a few mixed in with the power boats and sail boats.

The cell coverage was excellent much to my disappointment since right behind me is a giant verizon cell tower. Monhegan was where people went to disconnect from modern life. It was where you went to slow down and take the natural world in. Now many commercial establishments have signs  announcing they offer WiFi. There is espresso and wood fired pizza if you want it. I also could not help notice every building had electric now. To my left is a big building hidden from view. It houses the oil fired generator that has brought the island into the 21st century. There is a major debate over two wind mills they want to build to generate electric instead of using oil.

The light house does still flash it's warning to ships at sea. At least the light house remains the same. The Keeper may not have to fill the lamp with whale oil, but it still sends out it warning that a big hunk of rock sits 50 miles out at sea. 

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