Monday, June 2, 2014

Island Bound

Summer is here, and for Damon and I, that means we're island bound.  The Bowdoin Scientific Station is located on Kent Island, smack-dab in the middle of the mouth of the Bay of Fundy.  That means fog sometimes, but brilliant blue skies and sparkling waters other times.

We've been here for a week now, and the first one is always the hardest.  Getting everyone here, unpacking weeks worth of food, falling into a routine, and getting students started on their projects is a monumental task.  And on a small island with no public utilities, everything is exponentially harder than it is in civilization. We make all our electricity with a small array of solar panels, pump water up from the well, carry all our food and supplies from the mainland (given our 24 foot tides, sometimes we literally carry it over the marsh and through the mudflats), and create what we need out of the supplies we have.  This can be hard work, but it makes small rewards very satisfying.

Summer will fly by, although right now it might not seem that way.  Research will happen, problems will be solved, and friendships will blossom.  Sometimes a romance or two develops.  Birds will be banded, snails counted, and meals will turn out brilliant or terrible.  I'll post some photos as the summer progresses, but our internet connection is slow and bandwidth small, so posts probably won't be extensive (we have a radio antenna delivering internet from the next island over; an inefficient but cost-effective way to stay connected).

Here are some photos from our first week:

Our house on the island.  It's our waterfront cottage built by Rockefeller.

An eider nest.  Looks cozy.

A student working on his bird blind.

One of our artists.

Lunch in the dorm.

The bird blind comes together.

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