Kayaking with ORFS at Otter Pond

Tuesday, June 28: Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) was out on a small lake, with a brisk wind. It was windy enough that a few of the kayakers opted to walk with the hikers instead. But the conditions were not too bad; one had to work harder to go upwind, but control was easy, and the waves were manageable. It was a beautiful day.

The blueberries are still green, but coming along:

And the Sheep Laurel (Kalmia angustifolia) was bright along the waters.

The water lilies, both white and yellow, are thick along the shores. There are a lot of insects crawling on all of them.

There were ducks, and a cormorant:

There is one new house – so new it’s not finished yet! And I like the architecture, especially the window echoing the arch. 

Back at our launch point, we ate lunch together, and enjoyed the flowers next to us.

Kayaking Lake Kolelemook

Friday, June 24: A friend and I wanted to put boats on water, and maybe swim – and it was a hot summer afternoon; I knew all the best places would lack parking by then. So we went to Lake Kolelemook in Springfield, New Hampshire, where I have friends who live directly across from the boat ramp – and who are generous with parking privileges for fellow ORFS! It’s not a huge lake; we paddled around the entire thing.

Lots of turtles!

We knew there were nesting loons on the lake – and were thrilled to see an adult with two chicks!

Sewed on Saturday

I had cut out the body of this dress, and it languished by the machine until I HAD to get it done on Saturday – we were to wear bright clothing to honor a friend at the garden party that was her memorial. So Saturday morning I cut out pockets for it, and sewed it up – the hem is long, long, long! This is the same design as the gray-green dress I made in May, the same front and back so that I can just throw it on and go. Pockets for my phone and whatever. Light and summery. I’m actually finding I wear the first dress a couple of times a week; I’ve worn it to things like my uncle’s memorial, and thrown it over my bathing suit as a cover. I’m wearing it now, in fact, sitting getting this blog post out! The flowered one won’t get that much use, as it’s synthetic fabric, but it was perfect for yesterday’s Celebration of Life garden party. So, sew and wear the same day. 

I will honor my friends by posting a photo of the cardinals and nest that are along the entrance to the road up to where the party was held. It’s a great symbol for the love and kindness shared by this couple over 52 or so years of marriage.

Thursday’s Sunset

When I left Knit Night on Thursday, I realized that putting fuel in the car would be a prudent thing to do if I wanted to get all the way home, so I stopped for gas. Driving east toward the gas station I was admiring the sunset; the view east was unusually colorful. So while the pump was running, I walked over to where I could take the above photo. Then I turned around. Here is the view to the west:

The colors are too intense to seem real! I wonder if we are getting smoke from the fires in the west?

Kayaking Mascoma Lake with ORFS, 6/21

Tuesday, June 21: Outdoor Recreation for Seniors was out again – on an overcast and unseasonably cool day, on Mascoma Lake in Enfield, New Hampshire. Our group was more scattered than usual – people went in at least four different directions. It’s a larger lake than we usually paddle; some went up the river that feeds it, some went north, some south.

The above bridge, to one of the islands, marked my turning point. From there (after ducking to clear the bridge!) some of us headed west, to the other shore, a little south of where the historical Enfield Shaker Museum (https://shakermuseum.org/) is. Here, the cupola of the six story Great Stone Dwelling is visible through the trees.

Along the way, whimsy was evident:

The group I was mostly with only covered a little over three miles in the two hours we were out – we were too busy talking! Others went further. Then it was back to the parking lot, where we pulled out our lunches and visited more!

Kayaking Narraguagus Bay, Return

Wednesday, June 15: After landing kayaks on the beach yesterday, I needed to bring mine back around to the regular landing, where it’s a much easier carry up to the house (and the Roadtrek!) Aiming for high tide would make landing easier, so I set out well before the tide would be highest. First I paddled around the point, and out toward Pinkham Island where we’d been the day before. Wind was funneling through the slot between pieces of land, so I paddled back to the cove with the beach, and paddled around that – and that’s where the above photo was taken. If you zoom in, you can see the fish jumping – a school of menhaden (pogies) was being chased by seals. This is the first visit I’ve been able to observe this, but we saw it several times; the seals would push the school of fish (the dark area) into more shallow water, and they would try to escape becoming food by leaping from the water by the dozens. Or hundreds! I never did get a good photo of one of the seals, although we saw them many times.

Along the shore there were more lupines:

With more time before the tide was at its highest, I went as far up the creek as I could:

and then down, before hauling out on the flooded grasses.

My friends the homeowners have made some improvements since my last visit; the terns along the deck channel water away from the house quite effectively. I could have gotten a photo of them doing that – if I’d wanted to go out with my camera in the pouring rain! And I like how the shadows hit the columns when the  sun is right. There’s also a new weathervane on the roof.

On Thursday I headed for home, and will end with one photo taken from along the road – another fish! (A rockfish??) This one is high and dry, not far from Conway, New Hampshire.

Kayaking Narraguagus Bay, Maine

Tuesday, 4/14: If it’s Tuesday, I must be kayaking – but not with my ORFS friends this time! I, with my hosts, paddled out to Foster Island, in Narraguagus Bay. It was WINDY – much windier than forecast, and I really had to work to keep my inflatable kayak pointed where I wanted to go; I was pushing the limits of what it’s designed to do. Around the northern point of Foster Island, there’s a sandy point; we put in on the back side of it to stop for lunch.

View from lunch spot:

A UFO landing pad? Well, no – Matt pulled up a dead tire and moved it above the tide line for later removal.

Leaving out lunch spot. Across the way is Pinkham Island, where we headed next. It’s a preserved area, and has lots of eagles on it – we were looking for nests, although we didn’t see any there. We did see one on Foster, as we were leaving.

Taking off the skeg was a solution to the lack of turning; It was much better following the lunch break when I took it off!

Along Pinkham Island:

We watched a seal riding the falling tide between Pinkham and the mainland; I was focused on controlling my kayak, so didn’t get any photos of it – but it sure was cute!
 
Lupines along the way; further around the point, the hedge of roses appeared.

We settled in the sun on lounge chairs; Tasha the dog was freed from her prison in the house, and was very glad to come down to be on the beach with us!

Hanging Out in Milbridge, Maine

Saturday, June 11 – Monday, June 13: These days were spent hanging out, with a lot of knitting. The above is the view from my knitting chair on the porch. There was some rain, and a lot of sun; the rugosa roses were just getting going. These are different shades of pink, and white, and the area buzzes with pollinators and hummingbirds.

It is such a rough life! Those first few days, the most ambitious I was was to walk down to the beach with my hosts, and share cooking.

I think of these shaggy rockweed covered rocks at low tide as heffalumps, creatures from the “Winnie the Pooh” books.

One name of the full moon for this month is the “Rose Moon” – appropriate, given the great wall of them blooming now!

The Roadtrek on the Road Again

Friday, June 10: As soon as I could get the food and kayaks loaded in the Roadtrek, I headed out. My first stop was in Laconia, New Hampshire, where I visited one of my Quaker Knitting Goddess friends for a couple of hours. Then it was on to Orrington, Maine, where my goddaughter and her husband have bought a small house – which houses the above four cats (and one more I didn’t get a photo of), and a dog, as well as the two humans.

Saturday, June 11: After breakfast with my hosts, and an e-mail check, and visiting, I headed off to the coast of Maine. Missing the first turn meant that I had to turn around – and this was the most convenient place to do it! Serendipity – it meant that I will plan on kayaking on another trip; it is so very close to their house!

It is peak lupine season in Maine; here the field next to the parking area was full of them!

I went back to the last intersection, taking the road I should have taken in the first place – and not far along that road Audubon has another access for kayaking, so I have two places to explore when next I visit.

Yarn (and Food) Tasting

Thursday, June 9: Katie, from Bobolink Yarns, came to our Thursday Knit Night last week at 6 Loose Ladies in Chester, Vermont. Bobolink does breed specific yarns, often from farms that breed for meat, not spinning and knitting – wool that often has gone to waste. Every participant got a goodie bag (except the last thing I need is more yarn!) and could sample examples of several yarns. The shop was packed, and because it was a special event, more effort than usual was put into the food for the evening. I’d made cheesy cream puffs and deviled eggs, but my favorites were the tarts filled with brie and cranberry, made by another knitter.

And why am I a week late posting this, you ask? Because I left the next day for a week in Maine, where I didn’t have internet, and my cell signal was too weak to use as a hot spot!