Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Sunday in the Park with Dory (and a very quiet Five Islands)

With Damon away, it was girls gone mild in the house.  We did some porch construction (building the corners of the hand rails, a tricky business) until the power went out, finished a long run around the Maquoit Bay loop, took a power nap, and ate pancakes for dinner very healthy meals just like I do when Damon is here.  Sunday saw me grading while cheering on my Pats (3-0, but an ugly 3-0) after a cold front brought morning rain.  By 3 the weather was beautiful and the grading wasn't getting any more compelling, so Dory and I hopped in the truck and headed over to Reid State Park on Georgetown Island.

Looking west from the rocks.  That surf looks small here but was not.

Calothrix (blue-green algae):  slick enough for its own sign.

I've only been here during the depths of winter, when a walk on the beach wasn't too pleasant, so I was looking forward to a stroll on the sand.  Alas, it was not to be.  No dogs.  The dog was not amused, but she found this dead bush to take her frustration out on.  We managed to get some good strolling in around the parking lots, but this left much to be desired.

Poor Dory, as usual, got the short end of the stick.  I found a shady spot and left her in the truck for a little nap while I ventured out for a short jaunt on the beach.  Last time I was here I didn't know enough of my Maine geography to know what I was looking at, but from RSP you can see Damariscove Island on the horizon to the east, and Seguin off to the southwest.  There was some great surf from the morning's storm, and ocean spray softened the setting sun's light looking west.  I really loved the rocks at the eastern end of the beach -- the trail to the top affords a great view of the beach and nearby islands.  Worth the (minimal) climb.

Once the guilt about abandoning the dog grew too strong to ignore, she and I headed over to the village of Five Islands.  You know how I like fall because the crowds are gone?  Well, sometimes that also means the restaurants are closed, despite saying they are open.

That little sign says "Fall Hours Sat-Sun 11-7", at 6:15, when it was clearly closed.
 Even without a lobster roll to enjoy seaside, I loved checking out the working waterfront down here.  This looks like a very protected little harbor, and I imagine the place is hopping all summer.  I can't wait to get back when I can pick up lunch and enjoy the view.

Some news from the marine world is disappointing but not surprising:  Gulf of Maine shrimp are in trouble.  My husband and I buy this shrimp in frozen one pound packages (well, we used to before converting to a mostly plant-based diet).  It's great for making pasta or shrimp cakes, and I think it's sweeter than Gulf shrimp, with less umami flavor.  Unfortunately for the shrimp and the fishermen, their numbers appear to be at their lowest ever, suggesting the fishery may be completely shut down this winter.  Shrimp appear to be another victim of climate change in Maine, although overfishing is probably part of the issue as well. One of the frustrating things about marine conservation is the multiple issues that play into problems like this one.  It's the kind of thing that keeps me up at night.

I guess after that cheery note, I'd better lighten up.  So here's a pic from my drive home -- Georgetown is cool because so many marshes and tidal creeks bisect it.  It was a lovely way to end the day for Dory and I.

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