Sarah Graves, here, thinking today about how quiet it is in the neighborhood now that most of our summer visitors have returned home. Half the houses on our street are empty, while in the other half we year-rounders are busy putting plastic up on the windows and firewood down in the cellars. On Water Street, the shops are still open but no longer thronged, the mackerel fishermen have departed the breakwater, and the vessels in the boat basin are work boats, not yachts, for the most part. In other words, we’ve got the place all to ourselves, again, and I’d be lying if I said we didn’t enjoy it, especially on a bright, cool October day like today. So I thought I’d take a brief tour of the area and show you what it looks like when it’s ‘just us chickens.’
We started out Route 190 toward Route 1, thinking we’d put gas in the car at the Strawberry Patch convenience store and then come back on the shore road. So that’s what we did. At the corner we turned north heading toward Calais, on a highway where not a single RV could be seen, and not many other vehicles, either.
It takes a bit of gear-shifting to get used to being a remote Maine seacoast village once more, instead of a bustling summer colony. But one of the houses we passed on our way reminded me that this is what’s normal, here — this huge silence, sky and water that go on and on…and years that go on and on, while we do not.
I meant to take a lot of pictures of a lot of different things and scenes, but this one captured me pretty thoroughly. A wide field, a tiny old house with its adjacent shed, all still in good enough shape for me to see…ghosts. From this side, the place looks as if it’s crumbling into the earth, which in some ways, it is. But if you dare to proceed around back with your camera, you will find something surprising.
I have no idea how this interior managed to remain so pristine, or whether perhaps some other photographer was here just before me to set up the shot. But only the fear of a collapsing floor kept me from venturing inside. Well, that and a very good memory of the final scenes from The Blair Witch Project…
And here’s the whole place. The shed is leaning all at once, the boards sort of rotating on their nails so that the building appears to be slowly reclining. There’s a lean-to built onto the shed. A front door and back door on the house. I wish I’d had the nerve to go in, and I think next time, I will. So you’ll probably find my camera buried under a foundation stone…
And now some comic relief? Here’s one of Marty Howberg’s big cast-iron animals, this one overlooking Route 190. Moose aren’t always comical; a friend hit one the other night. It smashed through his windshield, then collapsed his van’s roof, broke his rear window, and rolled off behind. He drove home, unhurt; the police dispatched the animal. I think the moose in this photo is keeping the side up for moose-ish humor.