Owls Head Light

Owls Head Light is in Owls Head Maine, just down the road from Rockland. We’ve been to Rockland many times and never took the time to check out this little lighthouse. It sits in a lovely State Park with hiking trails and gorgeous views! I see there is an old cemetery in the park but I didn’t know that at the time! Have to go back to check it out, I love old cemeteries!

Owls Head Light 2018 Owls Head Light 2018

Owls Head Light 2018

from the back of the light

Owls Head Light 2018

Owls Head Light 2018 Owls Head Light 2018

Owls Head Light 2018 Owls Head Light 2018

Owls Head Light 2018 Owls Head Light 2018

Owls Head Light 2018

Owls Head Light 2018 Owls Head Light 2018

Owls Head Light 2018

Check out this this history of the light at Lighthouse Friends!

We took a quick run over to New Hampshire and up Mt. Washington one day. I’ll share that next…

 

Moody’s Diner

hands down, the best place to eat in Maine! No, it’s not a seafood restaurant, but it is homemade food and huge portions. It’s been around since 1927. They make all their pies fresh every morning and homemade donuts and whoopie pies too! There’s a cool little gift shop at one end of the parking lot. I got a Moxie T-shirt this time. We love our Moxie and always bring home about six cases!

Maine 2018

Maine 2018

Waldoboro, Maine

Maine 2018 Maine 2018

Maine 2018

Cool signs for the restrooms! The men’s had a man’s head cut out of an old LP

Maine 2018 Maine 2018

We looked for Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse in Rockland after dinner. Didn’t find how to actually get to it, but we did see it from far off. It is at the end of a long breakwater and only accessible on weekends anyway. We got a Charles Wysocki puzzle of it to do this winter! Here’s the picture of it from down at the harbor… Maine 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sculpture down near the harbor in Rockland. It’s a nice town, I like it there a lot. They have a big lobster festival every August. We’ve been several times.

Maine 2018

Next stop Owl’s Head Light, Owl’s Head Maine…

Pemaquid Point Lighthouse

Got to see a couple lighthouses I hadn’t seen before this last trip to Maine. I’ll do individual posts so as not to overload you with photos!

This light is small, but a gorgeous setting and lots of area to climb around on the rocks along the shore. There is a nice little museum attached and a small art gallery also. The grounds and the light keepers house are owned by the town of Bristol. A small apartment in the light keeper’s house is available for weekly rental! The tower is licensed to the American Lighthouse Association. The first light was built in 1827 but its poor construction necessitated a new light be built anti was completed in 1835. This was the first light in Maine to be automated in 1934.

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018 Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018 Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Bell Tower

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Oil House

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018 Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018 Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018 Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

Lovely picnic area here.

Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018 Pemaquid Lighthouse 2018

There is a gift shop and restaurant next door to the lighthouse, but I’d suggest packing a picnic lunch. There’s a lovely picnic area. Spend the day sitting in the sun on the rocks reading or exploring all the little tidal pools in the rocks for life. There was an old lobstermen running the museum, he was so interesting to talk too!  LOVED it here! Check out this live cam for Pemaquid Point!

Supper at Moody’s Diner on the way to Rockland next!

The Sin Mark

by Margaret Page Hood – published 1963.    Although this is the last in the Fox Island books, its kind of a prequel as Gil Donan isn’t yet on Fox Island. He is mentioned once as having applied for the job as constable for the island.

Tom Caldwell was an off-islander who bought the island, Rolling Stone, and lived there for several years.  He left the island more than 50 years ago under a cloud of mystery and sin, living in sin there with local girl Mariah Winslow who had a large,dark red birthmark on the side of her face, a sin mark, according to the islanders. But every year the tax money for the island arrived nice and neat. Any extra left after the taxes were paid was to go to Mariah who lived alone on the island. Now Tom has died (Mariah three years earlier) and Fernald Clayter, selectman, has received a letter from the lawyer. Tom has set up a fund, interest to be used to pay the taxes on Rolling Stone, property to remain in the name of his estate, not to be sold, and trespassing forbidden. He’s left $25,000 to the township on Fox Island to be used at the discretion of the resident doctor for the benefit of children handicapped by disfigurement or with physical disability. BUT there’s a provisional. A separate letter was sent to the minister with instructions for the provisional, which was to be announced at a town meeting. And thus begins the gossip, anger and accusation throwing that turns the whole town on its head.

I don’t want to tell too much of the story as I’d rather it unfold for you as you read it, and I definitely recommend it as well as all of Hood’s mysteries. There is a great mystery that happened on Rolling Stone that precipitated Tom leaving the island suddenly and Mariah living on there alone and hermit like the rest of her life. Not only does this provisional bring about the truth of what happened on Rolling Stone nearly 50 years ago, but brings to the surface other ‘sins’ hiding on the island among its people. A little different from most mysteries, but fascinating! And of course there’s Hood’s beautiful use of language, sense of place and characters with meat on them.

My mom always sang Go Tell Aunt Rhody to the kids when she would rock them, but she only ever sang part of it and I never did know the whole thing. Mariah sang it in the book and now I know what happened to Aunt Rhody and the old gray goose!

                 Go tell Aunt Rhody, go tell Aunt Rhody,  Go tell Aunt Rhody the old gray goose is dead. She’s worth savin’, she’s worth savin’, she’s worth savin’, to fill a featherbed.

I’ve tried to find a picture of the cover of this book as my old hardback doesn’t have the dust jacket but I couldn’t find not one picture of a cover! I did find a copy of this book for sale at Abebooks that says it included the dust jacket in good condition, so the book drunkard that I am, I had to buy it so I could have the dust jacket and see the cover! But it won’t be here for a couple weeks. All her other books had lovely covers. She wrote one more book, Tequila, set in New Mexico. I’ve ordered it and now I’ll have all her books. I’ve tried and tried to find out info on her online and nothing. But yesterday I found correspondence between her and a woman with the Maine State Library on Maine State Library State Documents. They were written between October 1950 and April 1963. Fascinating! She gave her biography at the request of the woman. I took screen shots of the letter from Ms. Hood and will share it here for you. You can read all the letters here if you like. Ms. Hood was born in Connecticut 1892 and died in 1983, I assume in New Mexico.  Her Great Grandfather lived next door to the Longfellow family in Maine!

Update! I got the book with the dust jacket and now have a picture of the cover! Here it is…

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This book counts towards The Vintage Cover Scavenger Hunt @Bev’s My Readers Block. Silver era 1963 – shadowy or ghostly figure

The Funeral Maker by Cathie Pelletier

Meet the residents of Mattagash, Maine, a dull backwater town rocked by scandal. seduction, mayhem, blackmail, and the only recorded case of beriberi on the entire North American continent! 
This is the story of the trials that beset the McKinnons, the first family of Mattagash, Maine, when they try to arrange a funeral for the family matriarch. At the heart of the novel are the three McKinnon sisters: Marge, the one who is dying; Pearl, the one who left town; Sicily, the one who stayed–and Sicily’s fourteen-year-old daughter, Amy Joy, a bored and sexually promiscuous adolescent whose raging hormones lead her straight into the brawny arms of one Chester Lee Gifford, Mattagash’s blackest sheep. One of the most highly acclaimed debuts in the last decade. 

The Funeral Makers is ‘a crazy rollicking whoop of a book, written with a poets’s sensibility and a deeply wacky down-home wisdom’    ~Lee Smith, author of Oral History

‘Pelletier writes with skill and grace, with a beautiful ear for human speech, awry affection for human folly and a wise, warm heart for human sadness.’
~Michael Malone, author of Handling Sin

‘Morbidly funny…satirizes, ridicules and maligns almost everything that’s sacred about American life.’     ~John Blades, Chicago Tribune

I picked this book up at the Naples, Maine library book sale this last summer. I like quirky and this is the queen of quirky! At first I thought it might be too quirky for me, I kept thinking I should be reading a Christmas mystery right now. But without me even knowing it Pelletier was reeling me into these wacky people’s lives and suddenly I couldn’t put it down! How she was able to get me invested in these nutty peoples lives just goes to show what a good writer she is!

A scene from Thelma and Marvin Jr’s ‘family camping experience’…

Hearing the faint gurgle, Thelma was the first to face the truth, coming suddenly awake and shouting to her husband, “Oh, my God! There’s a flood! The river has flooded!”
  Junior Ivy was granted, for the second time in two days, an opportunity to save his entire family. He struggled to abandon the sleeping bag, managing to get one leg out, but catching the other pants leg in the sharp teeth of the zipper. Trying to leave the tent by means of one leg in a sleeping bag proved more difficult than vaulting drunkenly from the backseat of the Packard.
  Thelma continued to scream, accompanied by Regina, who was now convince that she had indeed peed in her pants and was confused over what she considered her mother’s overreaction.
  “We’ll drown!” Thelma prophesied. Regina covered her eyes and wept in embarrassment. She knew she had a bed-wetting problem, but had never thought of it as a danger to her family.
  Junior stood up, hoping it would enable him to free his leg. At that moment Thelma, in an extreme case of hydrophobia, lurched for the flap opening and knocked her husband to the ground.
  Junior pitched forward, pulling up the pegs of the tent and taking the unlucky structure with him into the blackness until he felt the ground stop him. Pain flickered in his right wrist, which had positioned itself in an unnatural angle in hopes of releasing the pants leg from the zipper and was not prepared for breaking a fall. The wrist snapped. Junior heard it. Knew what it meant. A broken right wrist to accompany his sprained left ankle. He held the right arm across his stomach to protect it as he worked clumsily with the left arm to free himself of the tent. Everyone was wide awake now and dealing with the situation with honesty.
  Regina, who had checked her panties and found them to be reasonably dry, felt an apology was in order. She skulked off to the camper, where Randy and Cynthia stood sleepy, but round eyed in the door.
  Because her husband had uprooted the tent, Thelma found herself on the open ground. The bedding was now being bombarded by rain, as well as the water running down the pathway. But there was no flood. She was quite sure of that now. She heard Junior moaning. The pole light the town had erected near the campsite provided little light in the downpour. Thelma could see what looked like a living mountain of canvas swaying to and fro in the wet night. 
  “Junior? Are you under there, honey?”
  “Oh, my wrist,” moaned the hulk of canvas.
  “God! You look so funny!” Thelma burst out, when her eyes finally adjusted to the contours and discovered what must be Junior’s form beneath. She was seized with laughter, uncommon in Thelma, who perceived excessive gaity as unladylike.
  A crude syllogism surfaced in Junior’s mind. Major premise: He had broken his wrist when Thelma had stupidly shoved him in the dark and sent him sprawling with tent. Minor premise: He went sprawling because of his imbalance created by one pants leg being caught in the zipper, which happened because Thelma had shouted, “Flood!” Conclusion: Kill Thelma.
  Junior dove, tent and all, in the direction of Thelma’s laughter, which had moved nearer to him. Thelma, who could see, stepped aside and let the bulky form hurl past her.She stopped laughing.
  “What are you trying to do?” she asked her husband. “Don’t you want me to help you?”
  “I’m trying to kill you, Thelma,” Junior shouted. “You can help if you want to.”
  Hearing a savage, entirely primitive noise coming from the throat of the man she had married, Thelma ran for the camper, shoving the children back inside and locking the door.  Junior shed the tent and ran after her, forgetting about the symbiotic sleeping bag that still clung to him. He fell face first into the remains of what had been, before the rain, a pleasant morning campfire…

Morbidly funny really sums up this tale! But in all the silliness, Pelletier hits on serious issues and deep sadness in the characters. This is one that you will chew on well after you finish reading it. This is the first book in the four book series: Mattagash.

Peggy Ann

Candlemas Bay by Ruth Moore

This book was originally published in 1950 and reprinted by Blackberry Books in the 1990’s. 308 pages

The Ellis family was a well known and respected family in Candlemas Bay, ME for many generations. Nathaniel Ellis settled it when he was just 19. Grampie, Jebron Ellis, is the last of the old line. His son, Guy, is an alcoholic. Guy’s son Jeb is made from the old mould and wants to learn everything he can about his ancestors and their livelihood -fishing. Guy does nothing to help him. Grampie takes him under his wing.

Highly in debt, and owing Grampie a large debt for a loan to get a new modern fishing boat, Guy moved his family of 8 in with Grampie and Guy’s three sisters. Tensions are high with sister Candy who thinks she rules the roost. Could there be a bit of insanity going on with her?
A tragedy happens and everyones lives are forever changed.

I loved, loved, loved this one of Ruth Moore’s books. I couldn’t put it down. I read it in two days. Ms. Moore is a master at communicating a place and a people, their thoughts, their talk, their geography. She takes you there to feel the spray of the ocean and feel the damp of the fog and smell the food cooking in the kitchen. This is the third of her books I’ve read, you can read the other two reviews here. I have 4 more of her books on the shelf to read and I’m hoping I can find the rest someday!

This is a nice write up on Ruth Moore if your interested.

Peggy Ann