Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Island Party

This weekend I was invited to an island party in Downeast Maine.  My next door neighbor Seth is the grandson of Robert McCloskey who wrote several children's books which are quite well known in New England.  Seth attended Maine Maritime Academy and was having a gathering of friends from school.  His family owns Scott Island, a small private island off the coast of Deer Isle.

How nice it is to relax at an island getaway where the world can't get to you.  Seth's mom, Sal was a wonderful hostess and everybody pitched in to help with food preparation not the least of which was beach steaming 30 lobsters and brined grilled corn-on-the-cob.

One gets a good idea of how much forest land there is in Maine on a 3 hour trip north of Portland..... and there is another 3 hours driving on up to Nova Scotia!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Fireworks over Casco Bay

It was estimated that "tens of thousands" attended the annual 4th of July fireworks show last evening.  There was a comedian doing stand up and the Portland Symphony Orchestra before hand.  The symphony also played to a programmed display, but I couldn't hear it from my vantage point.

Since I abhor crowds I've never attended until this year.  My spot in the scene was away from the central crowd gathered on Eastern Prominade at a little strip of grass sourrounding the back cove.  There were people there too, but not a big crowd.  I spread out a plastic tarp (there was a thunder shower at 4 PM) and a blanket on top of that.  I brought a picknic of KFC and a magazine to read before the show.

It was the most interesting fireworks show I've ever seen because of the fog.  As the first showy explosions went aloft, you could see the tails of the rockets disapear into the fog.  They would explode and just to top half was visible.  Within just a couple more explosions, the fog dissapated as if the heat of the fireworks was melting away the moisture of the fog.  It happend again midway through the show, but this time the streamers went up, disapeared in the fog, then shot out above the fog layer to explode. 

The City abandoned the fireworks display for lack of funds, but several city businesses have taken up the cause and shown that private business supports our fair city.