My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant


Monday, October 4, 2010

Vacation: Belfast & Camden revisited


Vacation Days #9 & #10 (part 1)

On Tuesday July 6th, we returned to Belfast to do a little browsing (since almost everything was closed when we'd been there on the 4th), return to the
Belfast Co-op to pick up a few goodies, and meet Mary of Mitten Machen fame for lunch at Chase's Daily. We only took a couple of photos that day - don't ask me why! The only explanation I have is that it was so incredibly hot and humid my brain melted. And Chase's Daily - jammed with people (we had at least a 30-minute wait for a table), no a/c, no fans, no windows open (not that it would have done any good, since not a breath of air was stirring) - was insufferable. We experienced a gully-washer of a thunderstorm while we waited for our table (so waiting outside wasn't even a slightly more comfortable option), but it didn't cool things off a bit. If anything, it was even more hot and humid afterward! Ack.

Anyway, I have no food photos (we all had simple fare of black beans and rice with an appetizer of bruschetta), and no photos of lunch with Mary, or photos of much of anything from that day, really! Just these two...



Silly BW was neither bored nor pouty, but we thought the sign above this chair outside the Purple Baboon was amusing so he hammed it up for the camera.


Belfast has all these fun kinetic sculptures as part of their summer Eco-Motion project. We didn't see them all, and the two I most wanted to ride were a) out of order and b) always in use whenever I had a chance (too bad I didn't at least get a photo of that one, since it was a dragonfly with pretty translucent wings that flapped when you pushed the pedals. The photo of it on the above web site isn't a good one). This one was my third choice (but is currently the leader in the favorite Eco-Motion sculpture poll!), and made me think of the line, "A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle." What if it's a fish bicycle?! LOL (You can read more about these interactive kinetic sculptures here).

The day after our fishy bicycle ride and muggy midday munchies with Mary Mitten Machen (the alliteration of that was too tempting not to use), we were back in Rockport and Camden. Camden is full of beautiful, historic houses. Of all the ones we saw in the neighborhoods we walked or drove through, this was my favorite...


This house had a lot of stained glass going on. Note the big piece above the bay window, and the panels on either side of the front door. And don't you just love the fun multi-sided turret on the corner of the house?


I wouldn't want to own a house like this even if I could afford it (too big, too much maintenance, too much historic responsibility!), but I wish I could be the owners' houseguest for a week or two at a time! :-)

I had to include this third shot so you could see some of the details I loved best... the cupola, the eyebrow windows, the porthole windows (wonder what lays behind them? Bathrooms? Hallways? Some fun little secret hideaways?), and of course the fun 5-sided addition, which I'm imaging is a breakfast nook. And the flowers sure are pretty...



How I'd love to see this place at Christmas time!

We also paid a visit to the Camden Cemetery, which lies right along Camden Hills State Park. I love the tree-covered hills providing a backdrop for this particularly beautiful cemetery...


I have never seen a piece of rose quartz this huge and this gorgeous! Apparently the Smiths and Schippers (were they related?) decided a shared plot marking memorial was the best use of it. I wonder what the story of this beautiful piece of quartz is...


Lots of ship's captains, sailors and folks lost at sea are buried here. This was one of the more ornately carved headstones we found...


I took this one of the pretty Camden Public Library with my zoom from the public docks while we waited (in vain) for our Olad evening sail. Had we known it would be canceled, we would have spent our time exploring the library instead of sitting on the docks!

As you can see, it was misty over the land, but soon there was a dark, impenetrable fog bank over the water. You can see it coming behind the still-visible ships' masts in the harbor, along wtih this handsome tug boat (which has been nicely converted into what we think is someone's liveaboard sailing vessel) still basking in the warm sunlight...


Coming up next: Our afternoon eco-sail on Heron out of Rockport

13 comments:

  1. I love the picture of BW! lol

    Those kinetic sculptures are pretty cool! I especially like the pinwheel one, but I can just imagine how cool the dragonfly one was in person, too.

    Everything in the entire area looks so quaint. :)

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  2. That's neat you got to meet Mary. I always wonder what it would be like to meet a fellow blogger in person.

    Weather sounds very oppressive, and that shot of BW in the chair is too funny.

    I am totally diggin' the fish bike. I think any self-respecting fish would want one, provided he had some anti-SCUBA gear so he could ride it around, or else ride it underwater.

    I would have loved the dragonfly one too...does the Bike and the Beanstalk one grow a beanstalk when you pedal?

    That is a gorgeous house; I agree with you...even if I could afford it...I wouldn't know how/what to do with that much house. I'd love to see the inside though, and maybe house sit for a while.

    LOL...little do they know that we have such designs on their home! :)

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  3. Molly ~ Isn't that photo funny? BW's a nut. :-)

    The pinwheel kinetic sculpture is very pretty! Some of them were quite clever, and I wish we could have seen (and ridden) them all!

    That part of Maine (as well as others - and most of New England, come to that) has a very high quaintness factor.

    Rose ~ I hope to get a chance to meet a few more of my fellow bloggers someday - you and Molly would sure be fun to spend some time with in person, I'll bet! :-) I'm surprised you and Andrea have not met up yet.

    The weather was so pretty for the first few days, and then that awful hot, sticky stuff moved in for the last half of our stay. Lots of fog, too. People kept telling us it was unusual for that time of year, but that didn't make it any less unpleasant! I don't do muggy well. At least at the B&B, so close to the water, it cooled off at night. Even though we were in an upstairs bedroom, open windows and a good fan made for good sleeping.

    I often tell BW that living with him can be a lot like living with a fun cartoon character. :-)

    BW shot a little video of me riding the fish bike so you could see it in action, but the video clip is SO brief (just 5 seconds) that I decided to just use the photo. I have no idea what the Beanstalk bike does when you peddle, but I love your theory!

    LOL - if they knew about our designs on their gorgeous home, do you think the owners would consider us pesty house stalkers? (As opposed to peddling beanstalkers?) ;-)

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  4. It was insufferable that day! I hate that weather. Fortunately now it's in the 40s and 50s, perfect in my opinion. I love the sea captain's grave! It looks like something out of a mystery novel.

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  5. Mary ~ I know, wasn't it gawdawful oppressive? I sure hope you didn't have much more of that after we left! We miss Maine, except for the buggy and muggy bits! I'm envious of your current weather - we've only had about one day of cozy, Fall weather, and I spent almost all of it in the kitchen so I could finally make and eat autumnal foods! I think your temps sound perfect too. Send some our way, would you? I'm actually sick of nothing but dry, sunny days in the 80s and 90s! If I wanted that in October, I'd live in Arizona for crying out loud!

    That sea captain's headstone DOES look like something out of a mystery novel! Did you notice I just missed posting it on his birthday? That cemetery had some really artistic (and intriguing) gravestones.

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  6. Love the video...short as it may be.

    I'm not sure...but I think I like the sound of being a peddling beanstalker.

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  7. Rose ~ I'm glad you enjoyed the video! Only my second attempt at posting one to YouTube. Now, with the new iMac and its much faster processor, I can actually watch vids without having to put up with long buffering pauses and annoying herky-jerky playback, so maybe I'll post a few more!

    I would definitely prefer that the notation in my criminal file read "peddling beanstalker" rather than "pesty house-stalker!" ;-)

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  8. Jennifer ~ Me too, it was a fun one!

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  9. More great photos....you on that fish bike, that's so fun. Aren't vacations the best? If that fish bike was in Wyoming you wouldn't get on it, but just pass it by as a toy for tourists. I don't know...maybe you would get on it-you have a zest for life.
    I also love your last photo of that beautiful blue boat.

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  10. Hi, Sue! ~ Yes, vacations are absolutely the best! There are just way too few of them!

    I'd ride the fish bike if it were here locally for sure! But I think it would be due more to my sometimes childish behavior than to my zest for life. ;-)

    Isn't that blue boat an eye-catcher? It really appealed to us. I was glad it was as photogenic as it was handsome in person.

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  11. You got such great comments on this post, I hardly know what to add! I think it's so neat that you visit cemeteries on vacation and I enjoy your observations and curious comments.

    Thanks for adding the video on the bike - you always amaze me with what you can do - now you're on U-Tube!!

    So sad you didn't get to sail but the photo of the boat with the darkening skies was exactly what I would picture Maine to be like on a stormy day.

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  12. Jo ~ Thanks! :-) I'm sure most people would find it "odd" that I like to visit cemeteries on vacation, never mind that I like to photograph them! So thank you for thinking it's neat and enjoying my photos (of which I post only a fraction - old cemeteries have such interesting headstones!) and observations about them.

    LOL - you give me waaaay too much credit. Do you know how long I was on YouTube before I finally uploaded a video? It always took so long, but now it's pretty zippy. I'll have to upload more (but since the computer crash, I'll either have to find them on all my backup CDs or take new ones!) Anyway, I'm really glad you enjoyed watching my very brief video of riding the fish bike! :-)

    That dark sky is quite a backdrop for that pretty refurbished tug boat, isn't it? I'm still kicking myself for not thinking to take photos of the windjammer vanishing into the fog bank! It was eerie and beautiful!

    You want to see stormy skies in Maine, today would be a good one! They're getting quite the Nor'easter! We, of course, are getting yet another tedious day of sunshine and upper 70's. But we're allegedly in for a moderately cozy weekend... we shall see! xoxo

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SOME CURRENT & RECENT READING...

SOME CURRENT & RECENT READING...

  • INFERNO ~ Dan Brown
  • MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD & EVIL ~ John Berendt
  • MY NOTORIOUS LIFE: A NOVEL ~ Kate Manning
  • ONE SUMMER: AMERICA, 1927 ~ Bill Bryson
  • QUIET: THE POWER OF INTROVERTS IN A WORLD THAT CAN'T STOP TALKING ~ Susan Cain
  • THE BEAUTIFUL CIGAR GIRL ~ Daniel Stashower
  • THE DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY ~ Erik Larson
  • THE SHADOWS, KITH AND KIN ~ Joe R. Lansdale
  • THE TIPPING POINT ~ Malcolm Gladwell
There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"