Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Leaving Bangor

[Kyle] The night before we left Bangor, my flight was oversold so I ended up taking a plane to Boston and then doing the 5 hour bus ride to Bangor THEN I walked the 6 miles home to the boat. I got home around midnight and Maryanne had to come row out in the dinghy and get me. I think we're both pretty much done with Bangor.

We left at about 6:00 to catch the tide for the 20 mile trip to Penobscot Bay. We didn't want to tack in the narrow river and we wanted to top off our fuel along the way so we motored out, making a quick trip of it with the help of a fast current. We stopped at a marina in Winterport to get fuel. The place was clearly open (literally, we could have just gone through the open door behind the counter and turned on the pump ourselves) but nobody was around. After taking a nice walking tour of the area looking for anybody, we found a nice boater who directed us to the guy who was pottering around on the boat RIGHT BEHIND US. He actually turned out to be very helpful and friendly in that Maine way, which is to say not initially. He was accompanied by a very happy, friendly, smiley German Shepard (Alsatian for you English). This dog, however, was by far the smelliest dog I have ever encountered. There is something WRONG with that dog. At first as she was coming up to us, we thought 'Oh, friendly puppy! Come here, friendly puppy." then at about 10 feet the smell attacked us like a swarm of angry bees. Fighting our urges to turn and sprint away, we switched to "Nice puppy. (cough!) Run along now. (gag!) off you go. Please, please get away from us!" Now I know why Marina Man was clutching a big, fat, smelly stogie (cigar) between his teeth. After we got our fuel, Friendly Dog came bounding down to see us off and I very nearly did a modified Portland Dinghy Jump off the other side of Footprint to get away. By the time we got around the next corner we could breathe again.

Once we got into the Bay, the direct headwind turned into an almost direct headwind and we unfurled the sails and sailed close hauled in thickening fog down to our anchorage just south of Castine Harbor. Just before we got there, it cleared up enough for us to see the beautiful bay as we tacked back and forth into the little anchorage. There were about three other boats anchored (crowds!). We tacked through the anchorage, found a spot and dropped the anchor under sail. We tidied up briefly and then, exhausted from a week with no sleep (air travel is no fun for your crews either, folks.) we went for a nap.

About 3 minutes later we were awoken by a guy from a boat that had just arrived. He asked where we were from in clear view of the Portland Oregon on the transom. The question really seemed to me to be "Why are you here?". He explained that they (as in not us) were having a get together and they may be a bit loud.

"you haven't been invited, have you?"

"Um, no."

"Oh," loong pause, "well, you're invited."

Then he rowed off really fast.

In quick succession, 15 or 20 more boats showed up and all hoisted the same burgee. The 'get together' ended up being a giant dinghy raft up. everybody donned their best cold weather gear and then just tied up to each other as a guy in a dinghy on the end with a motor pushed the whole raft in circles around the anchorage. They sounded like they were having good fun. I briefly considered joining them but I was too tired to want to deal with putting the dinghy in the water so we passed on it. Just before breaking up for the night, they had a dinghy race and then sang something along the lines of 'Kumbaya'. Maybe it's best we didn't go after all.

[Maryanne]I had REALLY wanted to stop off and spend some time in Castine, it is the home of one of the top Maritime Marine Academies, supposedly set in a beautiful elm filled town, and with regular tours of the training vessels and facilities; Kyle was just exhausted so we gave it a miss..... Next time. The Maine coast is full of Seals, and I'm really enjoying them (reminds me of my time in Scotland) and we are also seeing occasional lone and shy porpoises. Still no catching of fish....


Mommy Dearest said...

Oh God, a dingies-tied-together party--how could you miss such a treat? Just think how much fun your blog readers would have had reading your recount of the big affair! Sometimes you have to do the big sacrifice for US, you know. Hehe.

Mommy Dearest said...

Kyle, I was almost retching at your description of the Smelly Dog. Thank heavens we don't have smell-a-vision! Can't tell you how much I enjoy reading your posts, both of you!