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Friday, July 27, 2012

Doin' nuthin'

     There are times when the best option seems to be reading, whittling, or just looking at the ocean.  There are a lot of things to do, but they can wait a few days.  Cindy will arrive for a week on Sunday, and Mark and Heather will join us for next Friday night.  Meanwhile, the adrenalin levels have subsided greatly from the first part of the summer that saw us covering 5,000 miles.  I must admit that Durelle has been doing her share of housekeeping...washing, vacuuming, and ironing today.  Last night we joined Dick and Hilda Brann at Papa J's for supper.  Durelle and Dick split a lobster pizza while I had baked salmon preceded by a combo of little neck clams and linguica.  
     Being Friday, the campground had its weekly Happy Hour. Campers bring a pot luck hors d'ouerves while the campground provides the beer and wine.  After the event I broke out the camera to take a couple of shots of the harbor.  The first shows a century-old monument and a channel marker along with assorted lobster buoys.  This is a high tide picture.
     In the upper left of the picture above you can see a small marina.  Below is a close-up of Bayside.
     The marina is 3.5 miles away and is really only visible from here when the setting sun illuminates it.
     I'm sure we will soon be getting more active and generating more photo ops.  In the meantime doin' nuthin' seems like a good option.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The evening light

     After 5000 miles on the road, it is nice to transition to a more relaxed mode.  I took care of a few chores and Durelle did a bunch of wash, and we had a pleasant happy hour.  At about 2000 we noticed that the sky had a gentle, rosy glow, so I grabbed the camera and went outside for a half hour.  These pictures, other than cropping, have not been "photo-shopped".  What you see is what I saw.
     All of these shots are looking east with the setting sun behind me.
     As you can see in the shot above, it was dead low tide.
     The colors are not dramatic, but they sure are gentle, soothing and relaxing.
     Does it get any better than this?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Maine !!!!

     After a long hot summer, we are safely ensconced in Maine...specifically the Moorings RV Resort in Belfast, ME.  Some long time fellow campers in Belfast welcomed us and helped us set up.  Then, of course, we settled in for our first Happy Hour.
     If you look closely to the left of the empty chair, you can see the momento that brother-in-law Mart presented to me at our reunion party.  Here's a closeup.
     Mart turned a bathroom plunger and a sewer line grommet into a drink holder.  It was decorated with the score of my last football game against arch-rival Orange,  The sewer grommet contained my name and number.  The last shot shows the front of the bus with a backdrop of Penobscot Bay.  
   We are here in Maine for the next six weeks, and are very happy to be here.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Small Town Americana

     Durelle's and my home town is Athol, MA.  Although there were settlements on the Millers River fifty years before that, the town was officially incorporated in 1762.  It had been a land grant to the Scottish Duke of Atholl; hence the name.  250 years later they held a great anniversary party.  The population is about 10,000...about the same as when we lived here.  Today's highlight was a 2 1/2 hour parade, but there were many other activities.  Many classes from Athol High School (the old one that we attended has been converted into apartments for public housing) chose the occasion to hold reunions.  Ours was a three day affair hosted by Claire and Buddy Carey and Mike Dube.  We parked the bus for a weekend of dry camping in the parking lot of the now inactive Silver Lake School.
     What follows is a bunch of parade pictures.  The streets were lined with spectators hours before the parade started.  I suppose you could find many other places to take similar small town pictures, but here's the ones from our town:
     This is the lead element proceeding westward with the Town Hall visible in the upper left.  One of the first elements recognized the military veterans.
     As a matter of fact, patriotism was as much of a theme as was the birthday celebration as is shown in the following picture.
     To typify the small town nature of things, across Main Street from where we watched the parade is the Garbose building, built in 1891.  It is three stories with shops on the street level and apartments above.  One of the parade watchers was a barking dog in the window.
     There was an assortment of marching bands;
but one of the highlights was the team of Clydesdales from Merrimack, NH.
     There were cars, fire trucks and a horse drawn hearse from a local funeral home.
     One of the things for which Athol is known worldwide is the L S Starrett company, a manufacturer of precision measuring equipment for more than a century.  Look for the micrometer on the front of their float.
     One of the more interesting floats was a joint Kiwanis/Rotary/Lions effort that used some great taxidermy.
     We even had some Mummers from Philadelphia.
     There were many other pictures of interesting bands and cars, but this should suffice.  After the parade we returned to the Careys where I grilled up a bunch of onions and peppers, sweet and hot Italian sausages, hot dogs, and hamburgers for about forty people.
     The picture of me and Mike Dube at the grill had bad lighting, but I'll include it for completeness.

Friday, July 20, 2012

A Visit to Athol, Massachusetts

     Today we left the coast and headed inland to our home town of Athol.  It was an easy 105 miles.  It was a bit intricate weaving our way out of Humarock, but once we found our way up to route 2, it was old home week.  Athol is celebrating the 250th anniversary of its official incorporation.  It had existed as a settlement for many years before that.  
     The first event was a reunion party for Marty Grover's class (59) at the Godin's home; a wonderful estate that hosted a good time.  You can see Durelle in the lower left.
     There was a lovely shot of a country lane, lined with stone walls that departs their property.
     We are parked on the grounds of the old Silver Lake School which is no longer functioning.  Down on Main street are a number of commemorative banners that were used to raise money to support the festivities..  Both my folks and Durelle's were recognized.  A tree blocked the eastward shot of my folk's banner, so I had to take it looking west on Main Street.
     Durelle's folk's banner, on the other hand, was perfectly situated with the flag and the city hall tower in the background.
 After the party at Godin's, we had another at the American Legion Hall for all classes prior to1966.  Below is a nice shot of Marty (Durelle's brother) and Ann Grover. 

Monday, July 16, 2012

A quick visit to Plymouth, MA

     Today we took a 45 minute drive down to Plymouth, MA to have lunch with Durelle's college roommate and her husband, Marcia and Peter Dudley.  The agreed meeting place was Isaac's, a waterfront restaurant no more than a hundred yards from the Mayflower II.  It is a neat spot with wonderful views of the harbor.
     After a nice lunch, we said, "good-bye" and wandered down by the Mayflower II and Plymouth Rock.  We didn't stop and walk around, so the pictures were quick shots out of the Jeep window.
  Our trip back north to Humarock wandered through several attractive South Shore towns such as Duxbury and Marshfield.  Pilgrim era street names abound: Alden, Standish, Mather, Samoset, etc.  Interspersed within luxury, old neighborhoods are a working sawmill, a creamery and several stables.  There are a lot of attractive and productive gardens. 
     Let me also include a couple of pictures I took last evening.  To the west of us the North River empties into the Atlantic.  By looking at the red and green channel markers, even a landlubber can see that the channel wanders elusively and dangerously.  There is a large sandy area that is exposed at low tide and disappears when the tide comes in.  Yesterday (a Sunday afternoon) the low tide attracted a crowd of beach-goers.
             The weather has been hot, but it promises to drop fifteen degrees for our weekend in Athol.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Weekend at Fourth Cliff

     It's weekend, and the YOUNG families are out in force.  Tents are springing up everywhere.  I think the tent sites go for $10 per night.  I think that it is wonderful to see the kids enjoying themselves.  It has been hazy, and the sunset did not have any clouds to make the photographer happy.  There have been several sport fishermen out here, but there are no lobster buoys. 
     At the lower right you can see a Kayak.  Here he is up close.
     As you might imagine, we have a decorative pillow with the head of a golden retriever.  It was sitting on the back of the couch when the setting sun peeked in to illuminate it.  It was a momentary event, but I caught it.
     I sat outside as the sun went down to see what I could capture.  There was one shot of a gull on a streetlight that wasn't bad.
     Eventually the sun went down, but there were no western clouds to give me anything dramatic.
     We hope you are enjoying life as much as we are.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Classic Mass. Coast Summertime

     After a late breakfast, we decided today would be a perfect day for a "lupper"; a hybrid of lunch and supper (another Dunn invention).  A few miles south of us, but not as far as Plymouth, is Marshfield.  Specifically, we went to the village of Brant Rock within Marshfield.  Other than seeking out some photogenic coastal cottages with weathered cedar shingles, we were looking for a seaside restaurant.  We found both.  We ate outside on a perfectly lovely day at the Fairview Inn.
     After an excellent calamari appetizer that was big enough for an entree, I had sauteed mussels over angel hair (and a lot of other stuff).  That glass at the upper right once contained Pinot Grigio.  By the way, we recently came across a desert wine from the famous Moore vineyards in western NY that was developed especially for us senior citizens.  You drink a glass just before bedtime.  It's called Pinot Moore.  Look for it.
     On the way back I snapped a few shots of those coastal cottages.
     And my favorite:

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Life on the edge

     In previous posts I described the location of our campsite as being on the edge of a bluff, looking directly over the Atlantic.  Well, this morning I conjured up enough energy to move my bones down and around to the bottom of that bluff.
     The first shot shows the height of the bluff.  I'm standing on the beach at low tide.

     Zooming in shows the proximity of the bus to the edge.
    You'll note that the windshield curtain is down to block that morning sun.  It will go back up after noon.  The round trip took a half hour, but it wasn't all wasted.  There were some young sun-bathers directly below the bus absorbing that same sun...sorry, no pictures.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Life is Good

     This morning I wandered (drove) over to by a nearby general store to get a Boston Globe and a couple of bagels.  Toasted with butter, they constituted breakfast.  We wandered around the campground a bit and took a few pictures.  Next to the office there are some big, bushy shrubs the color of hydrangeas...but they are not hydrangeas.  The first shot is from a distance and the next is a close-up.
     If anyone can identify it, I would appreciate it.  It's a handsome bush.
     To the north of us are Scituate and Cohasset, both classic South Shore and fairly wealthy towns.
     That's Scituate and the next is Cohasset.
     The next picture shows that life is relaxed.  We sat outside this evening for a couple of hours.  The Atlantic  horizon extends for 180 degrees.  Tomorrow I will set up the telescope to see if we can see Provincetown from here.