Sunday, September 23, 2018

Turkeys and Fungus, Bridges and Boats

September 9-16, 2018
Orland - Scarborough, Maine; Middletown, Rhode Island

Balsam Cove Campground in Orland is a 30 mile drive on Sunday, getting us there in time to see my Steelers' play another losing game :-(  Fortunately Bill's Cowboys win later in the day. 

Nice to have a level spot with FHUs at a reasonable cost. Park WiFi works well, and it's wonderfully quiet. 

Fort Point Lighthouse is privately owned, but the grounds that border the state park of the same name are accessible. It's a pretty spot to enjoy a partially cloudy Monday.

This wonderful bouquet grows along the path to the park.

What a surprise to find these behind the tree!

They match our Jeep :-)

Not as colorful, but just as interesting.

1890 Bell House. The bell is welded in place, but the house is one of only a few original still standing along the Maine coast.

Keeping even his whiskers still, Tessa never notices him above her.

The Fresnel lens is still active.
We head out Tuesday planning to see Fort Knox and the Penobscot River Bridge Observation Tower not far from us. On the way we drive through the pretty country, find some back roads to explore, enjoy the peace of being by ourselves. It's so nice that we scrap the more "organized" plan, and spend the afternoon doing more of the same. 

"Off-road" in Maine.

A small creek burbles across the forest floor.

Part of the wildlife refuge - a healthy meadow.

This vacant beauty must have so many stories.

Penobscot Bridge

One tower holds the observation point - at 420 feet tall, it is the highest occupied structure in Maine, and the highest bridge observatory in the world!

A rafter of turkeys.

They really are so weird looking!
Bucksport, Maine
Wednesday is a rare-for-us single night stop at Wassamki Springs RV Park in Scarborough, Maine. It's a cute park with a combination of open and shaded sites, and lots of rules. 

Rhode Island is our 35th state, and we're staying near the very popular town of Newport. Like Maine, this state has very pricey options. Meadowlark Trailer and RV Park is an older park of mostly seasonal campers squeezed together on very un-level sites. The fronts of the trailers are all on tall stacks of blocks that I wouldn't trust, but all look like they've been that way for years. Our $43/night spot in the back is electric only. For what we're doing while here, it's fine. 

After a quick set up on Thursday, we drive into Newport for a late lunch. Scratch Kitchen has one of those menus that's entertaining to read - so many creative concoctions! My sausage and grits chowder is amazing.

When I was in high school I babysat the "Shorter Kids" just up the road in our little village. I lost track of them and we reconnected on Facebook a few years ago. Wayne lives in Massachusetts, Becky in Vancouver, BC. Wayne manages the Beverly Yacht Club in the very affluent little town of Marion, Massachusetts, and we make plans to meet him there on Friday. 

One of the oldest yacht clubs in the country.

Such a beautiful place.

Beginning it's life as a family home, the clubhouse retains a very homey feel.

Sippican Harbor
After a tour of the clubhouse we all hop on the shuttle boat which takes us out to Wayne's boat in the little marina. Soon we're beyond the boats and out on the open water. Yes, I'd love to pilot the boat, thanks Wayne! 

It's a perfect day to be out on the water with our own personal guide. When we get to Bird Island, I relinquish the wheel so I can take pics of the pretty little lighthouse. We relax for awhile, learn more about the area, and eventually head back for lunch.

Built in 1819, the lighthouse on Bird Island is 25' tall, lighting the entrance to Sippican Harbor. The September 21, 1938, hurricane destroyed everything on the island but the light. It was not relit until 1997, and remains active with a solar powered flashing light. 

Named for its population of roseate terns (a few seen on the right), the island is home to the largest breeding colony of the species in North America.

Learning what's where.

Lil' windy on the water......
I could get used to this.

Wayne looking so much like his dad.
Wonderful to see this "kid" again!
Saturday we're off for another visit! This time in Connecticutt to see a high school friend who we visited here two years ago. Cindi was in Bill's class, and we all have fun memories. She and her husband Charlie meet us "half-way" in Plainfield with their new pup Mickie. It's fun getting caught up with them, and I can't believe I forgot to get a pic!!

We take the long way home, making a couple stops to see more of Rhode Island. When we get back to Newport I remember the boat show is this weekend. Parking is $50 everywhere! We check out some of the older neighborhoods with their beautiful homes - these aren't the crazy huge mansions. 

Autumn colors are subtle here - I've seen more color in photos of Colorado and Utah than we're seeing here so far.
So although we stayed in Rhode Island, we actually saw less of the state than we did when we visited last time on a day trip. Having the opportunity to see wonderful friends on "this side" of the country was the best!

Sunday we'll move through four states to reach our incredible destination :-))))


  1. So wonderful to see that Fresnel lens on its intended perch, Jodee. :) Beautiful yacht club that Wayne is at. We didn’t explore the Buzzards Bay Area when we headed out to the looks amazing!

    1. Next time we'll see the rest of the Cape, but Marion is an exceptionally beautiful place that I highly recommend.

  2. How cool is that to have your own guide on the water--and can't wait to read about your "incredible destination!"

    1. We really had a great time getting out on the water with Wayne. He's been there eight years and we learned a lot!

  3. Lots of beautiful areas in New England. Love that you found a dirt road. How sweet to have a friend with a boat. Tessa looks like she was having a blast...well, maybe not:)

    1. She's less confident on boats, but handles them well. Still, she's always happy to gget on solid ground :-)

  4. The "widow's walk" on the roofs immediately told me you were along a New England coast. That's not an architectural feature you see everywhere.

    1. Aren't they so cool? They always remind me of the tv show The Ghost and Mrs Muir - a very old show!

  5. You have discovered some absolutely gorgeous country, and waterways, out east. I'd want to go up in that bridge tower.

    1. Even with my fear of heights I figured I'd be okay with the tower being completely closed in. We'll have to check it out next time and hope for clear skies.

  6. Love your Fungi! Great colonies. Nice that people seem to leave it alone. Do those folks who own the lighthouse actually own a Fresnel lens or am I confused and that’s a different light? I just can’t imagine owning a Fresnel. SO sorry to see that beautiful house abandoned. Surely someone must want to fix it up. LOL that you even reconnect with kids you babysat. You guys are too much!

    1. They do own the lighthouse and I'm assuming they own the lens as well. They must have a contract of some kind as the light is still active. Must be so cool!! I fell in love with that old abandoned house. No trees around it though :-( Yeah, it's crazy who we find traveling around the country :-))))

  7. How fun to explore the back country. I hope you get to see some vibrant fall colors soon. I don't have sea legs on smaller boats so thanks for taking me along :-) I was fine on the cruise ship though!

    1. Bill doesn't always do well on the smaller ones either so we lucked out with a smooth-water day! We definitely left New England too soon this time, no colors in Virginia yet!

  8. How fun to have a private boat tour! Could you ever have imagined that one day you would travel to Maine and go out on a boat with a kid that you babysat when you were in high is just so wild, isn't it? It looks so beautiful there. And Tessa is such a good sport. :-))

    1. Isn't that the truth?! Never in a million years :-)))