Looks Normal

Sat, 07/18/2020 - 3:15pm

About this blog:

  • Frank Barnako is a seasonal resident of Wiscasset at Clarks Point on the Sheepscot River.   His career in journalism included on air and news director positions with CBS and NBC Radio and TV stations.  He was a pioneer in the Internet, helping to create and co-found MarketWatch.com where he also developed a 200-station radio network and wrote daily columns focused on the stock market, business news, and technology. Barnako describes himself as “an aspiring photographer,” whose work can be seen at frankbarnako.com<http://frankbarnako.com>. He is a member of the town’s Investment Advisory Committee. Email him at wiscasset@barnako.com.

If you can forget everybody walking around town wearing surgical masks, this week in Wiscasset almost looked like a normal summertime.
With our neighbors, Tom and Christiane Kovarik, we went to the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens. For an hour and a half we walked the grounds,  marveling “Ain’t nature amazing?”  We talked with one of the landscapers. She’s been at the Gardens for several years, and happily answered questions like “What is that?” and “What is That?”
After finding a few gifts for friends in the Museum Shop, we did like many tourists do - went to Bet’s Fish Fry, well known for huge portions and a sign that promises “Free Beer Tomorrow.” 
Because of the Virus, there’s no seating at the picnic tables on the lawn next to the fish fry shack.  So, we ate in the car, being careful to balance fish and a mountain of french fries in our lap.
Back in Wiscasset, I’m happy to see so much interest in the Board of Selectmen.  There are six candidates running for three two-year seats.  Three men and three women. It’s a good thing there is so much interest in serving, certainly more than I’ve seen in the 16 years we’ve been here.  I think it’s a good sign when people say they want to serve, especially when it can become  a job.  People stop you on the street and want to discuss issues, or they ask you why such-and-such was done.  As my Poli Sci professor in college said, you have to beware of “the peeee-pul.”
Over the New Year’s holiday, I’m sure many people were like me, looking forward to a continuing rebirth of enthusiasm for the Village, ignited in no small part by the Route 1 highway project.  Business people and residents worked with Maine DOT last summer to make the project rational and positive.  There was a real spirit of “Can do!”
Then the Virus.  And everything, schedule-wise, fell apart.  What a shame!
I was really surprised that there was no July 4th parade in Wiscasset.  I know the Town canceled it, for good reason -- crowds and kids and bugs, I know.  But there are enough quirky, fun people here that I thought someone would “go rogue” and create a small, entertaining, funny substitute 4th of July “walk”.  Hopefully, Next Year!!!