Three lobsters, two friends, one week

Sat, 09/19/2020 - 5:45pm

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.

Summer vacation time may be over for some people, but not for us in Wiscasset.

A few months ago, some neighbors in South Carolina, Steve and Lynn,  told us they were getting married in August and would be honeymooning at our house for eight days. It is his fifth marriage, and her second.  As a child, she spent summers with her family in  Ellsworth; he'd not been to Maine in years.

Eight days is a long time for houseguests.  Wish I'd been a little more awake when he called and hold me their plan. I was just happy to have them visit I didn't think about 8 DAYS!!!  That's as many visitor days that we have in a usual summer - which this ain't.

We figured we'd knock their socks off early and so on the first day we went to the Moore family's marvelous Cabbage Island Clambakes in Boothbay.  For more than twenty years, they've been serving up a boat ride and guided tour of the harbor and  a lunch of chowder, baked potato, an onion, hard boiled egg, clams, corn on the cob, TWO lobsters and Bennie Alice's blueberry cake.  She by the way is the family matriarch, set to celebrate her 99th birthday next week.

And so began a week of fun, GORGEOUS weather, sun, fantastic food, and Maine, the way life should be.. 

On Saturday, we went to the  Farmer's Market in Brunswick at the high school.  The harvest included apple cider, breads, cheeses, vegetables and fruits.  Lots of nice people, warm and welcoming vendors and, on the way back to the car, we came across a guy and his 35-year-old parrot.

Steve and Lynn went exploring on their own, too. They went to Ellsworth to find the old house on the lake where Lynn summered with her family.   The house is still there.  So is the lake.

Another day they spent in Boothbay shopping.  Steve enjoys buying clothes for Lynn, and Lynn enjoys getting them.

One big memory of the week was hiking on the Eaton Farm Preserve, a lovely two mile loop along the Back River. We had Luc, our 85-pound Briard with us.  I was taking a picture of Lynn, Steve and Donna when Luc 'photobombed' us.  He often manages to squeeze into the frame when we're having our picture taken.

We had fabulous meals during the week.  Lynn is a great chef, and loves to cook.  In advance of their trip, Steve arranged to have duck breasts shipped to us.  The four of us had been planning a France trip last spring but, well, you know ... Covid.  So as a consolation prize, Steve sent us a marvelous French-inspired cookbook.  A few recipes for duck breasts caught Lynn's eye, and so she cooked two nights in the house.  Donna prepared her famous chicken pot pie and ratatouille, and I did a couple Gulf of Maine salmon filets.  We also went to another of our annual favorites, Blue, the restaurant at Grey Havens Inn https://greyhavens.com on Georgetown Island. Innkeepers Dick and Eve run and own the luxurious and comfortable property overlooking Porpoise Harbor. We try go go there several times each summer.

One more great meal was at Wiscasset's Little Village Bistro.  Tony Bickford ha just freshened the menu and one of the additions is Lobster Alfredo with lobster tail.  Donna and I had it and it was great.  The lobster was sweet and the Alfredo sauce was tasty and buttery.  Steve enjoyed the stuffed crab, and Lynn had the mixed seafood risotto

Steve is an energetic guy, New Jersey bred.  He says he's had insomnia for many years, and rarely sleeps more than a few hours.  That was not the case in Maine. ZONK! Eight hours, straight through, he said.  For all but one night, Steve  was a goner after 930pm. One reason he and she, were tired was that with our running around they also spent several hours online, and then in person, looking for a house to rent next summer. 

While this does seem to have been a busy week, let me note that Steve and Lynn did not visit a lighthouse, ride the WW&F Railroad, hike Monhegan or Acadia, kayak, visit the Bowdoin College art museum,  eat at Shaw's in New Harbor, rummage around at Montsweag ..... Well, there's always next year.  Steve and Lynn have already booked their house rental.