3 July, kiwi friends Sue and Simon arrived in Rockland, and we sailed together with Keir to Camden, where we walked around this picturesque town and harbour, and tied up to a buoy near the barge where the fireworks were set off for the 4 July fireworks for Independence Day, and had lobsters for dinner. Keir left on the bus to Boston the next morning from Rockland to return to Scotland, having sailed over 1,500nmiles with us.
5 July, we had a lovely sail, from Rockland, past thousands of lobster pot buoys to Castine for a night. Castine has a large navy school, and a few shops and boatyards to service the school. It was settled in the 1600s, and was fought over by the French, the Dutch, and the British, and exchanged hands 25 times. We bought a Blueberry Pie, overflowing with blueberries. There were a couple of oldtime schooners in the harbour, and the next morning we sailed alongside them to Buck’s Harbour. We watched the 35 guests and 10 crew sail into the bay, and manually drop anchor and lower the sails. We heard later from a guest on ‘Victory Chimes’ that they had lobsters for dinner, the guests were aboard for 6 nights, this couple had been every year for the past 12 years.
7 July we woke up to another Maine hazard, FOG! We were keen to take Simon and Sue to see the Wooden Boat School, and sailed quietly up 10.5 nmiles up Eggemoggin Reach, and tied up to a buoy. We went ashore and looked into the school, where thousands of people have learned the skills of wooden boatbuilding.
8 July, Simon had contacted a crewmate from his Whitbread racing 35 years ago, who now lives in North haven, Mark and Allison. We sailed 25.5nmiles to a mooring at Vinalhaven, where they met us, and we motored across to North haven. We bought 12 lobsters and oysters from their friendly lobsterman, Zebediah, and drove to their home-built home for a lovely meal by the fire, while Allison did our laundry. 9 July we went to the local Farmers Market, in light rain, then went back to their home for leftover crab and lobster rolls.
The next morning we woke up early to motor 10nmiles in freezing fog across to Rockland, we had sailed 100nmiles together with Simon and Sue, in a week. They caught the bus to Boston, and a plane to Munich.
10.7 We spent the rest of the day doing laundry and provisioning, and visited some of the local boatyards, as we are thinking of leaving ‘Restless’ in Rockland for the winter.
11 July our kiwi friend Peter arrived by bus, and we bought some more lobsters for another Maine lobster dinner together. We are waiting on some new batteries, and then we plan to set off together for Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
Here I am going to steal Karin and Jim’s description of the Lobster Pot Buoys of Maine, where they said they were like ‘hundreds and thousands on a cake’ floating on the sea. Each lobsterman has about 1,000 pots, and there are thousands of lobstermen. You work it out, we know it is a major hazard, with a tidal drop of between 15 and 40 feet in different areas, the ropes are sometimes underwater.