Liralen Li (liralen) wrote,
Liralen Li

Second Day in Bar Harbor

John was up early, finishing details on how to meet up with folks when we're done here, and he found that he does, indeed, have my cold. I hope his Coldeze will help him more than my Airboure did. I had a really hard time with my breathing this morning, but by the time I'd downed a mug of coffee at the bakery a block down from the hotel and coughed up some stuff, I was better...

We weren't that ambitious with today, but Jet really, really, really wanted to climb Cadillac Mountain and go to Sandy Beach.

Breakfast was actually a lot better this morning as we went to Cottage Street Bakery, which is a little bakery just a block away from the hotel. They had their own baked goods, breads, and blueberry jams and toppings. I had French toast just mounded with wild Maine blueberries. John had a breakfast sandwich, and Jet had a popover with strawberry jam and half a plate of crisp, thin bacon. The bacon here seems to be served much thinner than we're used to it, but it's cooked perfectly crisp. So that's worthwhile.

From there we wandered about town a little, starting with the yarn shop next door, which cheerfully sold me a whole book of tapestry needles for just $1 as I really needed needles to finish all the fingerless mitts I'd made up in Vermont as well as the Pontonumous-inspired mitts I was designing as I went from the Noro sock yarn I'd found in Vermont.

We toured about, looking at all the little shops, ended up buying just one t-shirt that had Acadia National Park -- "Inspiration is what you find when the pavement ends", a bag of Coldeze for John, and some hair ties for me as I kept losing them as we went. Little black bands don't seem to show up well anywhere.

We went back to the room, unloaded, and then loaded up the car for a hike for the boys and some time on the beach for all of us when they were done with the hike. I brought along the laptop and all my knitting, as my legs and body were stlil sore from yesterday and a bad night not being able to sleep between wondering what the heck to do with visit requests that just weren't lining up. I needed to write post cards, finish up journal entries, and finish all the fingerless mitts in case folks that we do meet up with want them.

At the TOP!
I sat there with my stuff while the boys climbed and I was very content indeed and got quite a lot done. Not just journal entry but post cards, knitting, and other things as well. I was in the middle of something when the phone rang just once. I picked it up and no one was on the other end. Then I saw that a voice message had happened, so I went in and tried to get the voice message and the voice messaging system was cutting in and out as I didn't even have one bar where I was sitting. A moment later and it cleared and I heard that the boys had made it to the top of the mountain and were looking for a bus on the way down, but would like to talk to me about maybe coming to get them.

So I tried calling back while the voice message line was still clear. I got them, and found that they hadn't seen a bus. So I drove the car up to get them and found them at the entrance to the little park at the top. They hadn't seen a bus the whole time they were up there, so maybe the busses weren't running there. That being so it was good that I went up to get them.

They were both pretty tired from the 1500 foot mountain climb, for all that there was plenty of oxygen, the rocky terraign had been pretty steep. The path had pretty much led straight up from the bottom. They'd met others going down and one adult had asked Jet how old he was and they were pretty admiring of Jet being just eight and doing the whole thing with no qualms.

So we went for a drive around the West side of Mount Desert Island. It was very... Maine like and kind of reminded us of Scotland, actually, with that regions' diversity of greenery and the old housing, and the seaside manner. There were stands every few miles that said, "DRY camp wood $5". *laughs* There was a little "Model Shop" in an old couple's house out by the water, where the boys bought a small model of the US Constitution. There were bogs and mist and mountains and woods, water was everywhere and rocks to bound it. At the south end, in Bernard, just across the harbor from Bass Harbor, we found Thurston's Lobster Pound.

So, I think, a Lobster Pound is a place that keeps lobsters alive until they're bought by those that wish to cook them, or they cook them to be eaten. Thurston's served "lobster in the rough" in a little yellow plastic covered picnic area right over part of the harbor. They had lots of tanks of lobsters waiting right there, with one molted lobster that had lost its shell so was a soft-shelled lobster awaiting its doom. They also sold lobster rolls and while both John and I had had lobster in the shell, we'd never had a lobster roll before.

So we each got one and Jet was overjoyed to be able to just get a hot dog. The other lobster pounds nearer Bar Harbor didn't have anything BUT lobster or clams. I got an Old Soaker Blueberry soda and Jet got another of their root beers. The Maine-ly Meats the other day had carried the root beers, and Jet was very fond of them. John got a beer, and I added a cole slaw to have some roughage with my meat.

The lobster roll was very, very good. Lump lobster meat lightly dressed on a single leaf of lettuce in a top-cut hot dog bun with the sides gently toasted with butter. It was delicate and solid with lobster meat, just a little sweet and cold and really, really wonderful. A whole lot easier than shelling a bug ourselves, no matter how good the price.

It was really good and really inexpensive compared to what we'd seen in town, too. Just $10.75 compared to $18 in town. Yeesh. But they had it all right there, and they did it perfectly. So it was good to take advantage of that while we were there.

A cool thing was being able to actually see lobster pots up close, too, so that Jet could see the mechanism by which they worked. It was fairly simple, too. Just two funnels of netting that had a much smaller mouth on the inside of the trap than the outside.

rock wall
From there we went and saw the sea wall by Seawall, and then back up towards the main Acadia National Park as Jet really wanted to go back to Sand Beach before dinner. We made it and played out by the water as the wind started picking up.

Jet asked, during the day, "Why is the sky white?"

"Because it's completely covered in clouds."

"I don't think it's going to rain, though, as when it rains it gets those big black clouds, doesn't it?"

I laughed, "Not always. I suspect it's going to rain even from this white sky."

Yeah, I don't think Jet's ever seen a sky completely blanketed in clouds before...

Life's a Beach
He loved digging in the sand. I walked up and down the beach a few times to get a good photo of the empty life guard station, and I dug a little with my feet. I chased seagulls, and Jet let the waves take away three or four different castles, restaurants, towers, and lighthouse with big retaining walls. Then John realized that it was raining. Then it started pouring. By the time we managed to rinse our feet of at the faucet by the changing booths, the thunder started to roll and the lighting lit the sky. When we got into the car, the water started sheeting down.

We saw a lot of people caught out in it and were grateful we weren't among them. My new rain coat worked really, really well, and I was very happy with it. It was completely waterproof and still very breathable from within it. I loved that. We got back to the hotel through the expedience of a little road I'd seen grayed in on the map that cut off nearly three times the driving we'd otherwise have had to do. We ducked back into the room just to use the bathroom and get our shoes dried off before we were back out again to find some dinner.

And the sky was clear and sunny even as all the awning dripped rain and the eaves still drained water in torrents into the street.

Wow. We went to Geddy's by the waterfront as it was filled with cute memorabilia for the Bar Harbor area, including a huge sign that read "Ba!" for the bar. The amusing thing is that I don't think we heard a single Maine accent while we were here other than the tourists reading t-shirts. *laughs*

Thunderstorm Blowing Through
While we were eating another downpour happened with thunder and lightning and then let up as we exited from our meal. Our timing just was amazing... we went to a little ice cream shop that also made its own candy and each got a single cone. We walked back to the hotel in a steady, quiet rain that also melted our ice creams a little and made everything damp. In the town's square a band was playing in the covered bandstand while their audience stood outside under umbrellas and listened to them play.

It's been more than a decade since I've eaten an ice cream cone in a warm summer rain. It was really nice to do. when we got back to the room, we watched Ghostbusters and the boys went to sleep while I finished this off and am finally caught up just in time for us to get back on the road.

It was a really good day and I'm really glad we stayed another one in order to have a great lobster roll and some time on the beach. We need to find Jet a sunny beach he can play on, on the way back to Philly.

My cold's been a little worse lately, the asthma is back on, hard, but I think it that it's actually the fault of the sheer volume of humidity in the air. It'll be interesting to see just how well it clears up when I get back into the dry.
Tags: 2009_roadtrip, travel

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