Categorized | Maine Lighthouse Keeper

Hard Drives and Easy Guests

Monday, July 30, 2012
Day 298

(I still can’t get to my pics…hopefully later today can get them up, but progress is being made…)

My new G-Drive mini, external hard drive has been moving, and copying files for the last four hours. It’s almost done. I will then make sure they are there and clear space on my macbook HD. Until then, it is blocking me out, and shutting me down, throughout the day. Soon…I hope. Oops. “Serious Disk Error” again on screen. I’m just going to keep going. …that’s today’s message from the Island…

My Mom has left the Island, and the State. I just hope not the “state of the Island”. It was a wonderful visit and I am truly blessed to have her. I am also blessed to be able to share this experience with her, and have her spend a few days here and better understand why I love it so much, and why I’m so committed to this Lighthouse, and the Endeavor project.

We have had lots of visitors, and guests, and organizations over the last week. I’ve posted some random snaps here. Thanks to Robbie George, photographer for National Geographic, from Colorado, who spent six hours shooting on Island, (WOW! …and check out his site at ), again the kids and counselors from UMM’s Camp MESSY, especially Tora Johnson, the Scouts of Troop 48 from Merrimack NH, and loved having the cruisers from “Palawan”, a 75’ sailboat registered in Bermuda and currently out of Newport, visit. She’s the biggest sailboat I’ve ever seen in this harbor. A real beauty. And of course our guests…most recently Jim and Carol Needham from California!

Tim Harrison had an exciting day on Saturday, at the Maine Lighthouse Museum 2nd Annual Celebration and the unveiling of an incredible new book, From Guiding Lights to Beacons for Business: The Many Lives of Maine’s Lighthouses. Published by Historic New England
Of which he was one of the authors, and he and Kathleen Finnegan are well credited by the other authors for the amazing work they have done to preserve Lighthouses and their history. You can order the book from Lighthouse Digest here…

The hummingbirds have finally found the feeder, or at least one has. A bumper wild blueberry crop is expected this year, and if you didn’t know, Maine is the number one state in the country for producing wild blueberries. They are expecting 95 million pounds! Go Anti-Ox! The Island raspberry barren is anything but, and unfortunately, the dock price for soft-shell lobsters remains below $2 a pound.

Dragonflies, bats, and lightning bugs abound. The Bell clangs, the Horn sounds, and the Light shines brightly. Good Enuf.

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3 Responses to “Hard Drives and Easy Guests”

  1. Arthur says:

    Surely lots of excitement at that museum. A bit of a long not so exciting drive from Cutler and back during the height of tourist season. Too bad they have not had a curator for some time to properly look after the collection. Looked a bit rough a month ago.

    Would believe from your endorsement you highly recommend the new book. I am looking forward to enjoying it likewise.

    Are you going to try your hand at blueberry harvesting?

    Used to be a buoy out front offshore. It was a whistling buoy. Too bad its gone. You could have added it to your list of sounds. Some of them did not whistle. Instead they moaned or groaned sort of like a sick cow might sound.

    The light — is it on all the time or controlled by a sensor? Some lights stay on but most not. Just think. Light keepers done away with by a tiny light sensor. But those sensors don’t keep the tower glass clean needed to make a good light. Maybe the Coast Guard could come up with windshield wipers and wash solution that could be run from a timer.

    You have a few seals. Down on the Cape they have hundreds hanging around close to shore to stay out of range of the sharks now on patrol offshore. And people so scared of the sharks the won’t go near the water. One person said even the water in the bath tub. Did you know seals enjoy those tender and tasty soft shells?

    ‘Nuf said for the time being.

    (notice there is no “E”. Otherwise it is E–nuf, not Enuf, that E has to stand out, or it can be “Good’nuf” and save that E for some other occasion. Down-Easters don’t waste words or letter. They save them up for town meeting or maybe for when getting stuck inside during a winter blizzard so bad you can’t even get out to the workshop.)

  2. Carole says:

    I did not know that a huge convention of lawyers was taking place down on Cape Cod this summer. Oh darn they are grey and have suits on.

    How about the seals? I have heard a rumor that they have some sort of virus attacking them?

    Good point about who cleans the windows in the current lighthouses they must get dirty with bugs and the like. Oh and what is your job with the Coast Guard – Window Washer and Bug Cleaner level I. However I am working my way up to be allowed to clean bird s__t off of the top of the lighthouse towers.

  3. Arthur says:

    Forgot to mention that the whistling buoy had a flashing red light on it that could be seen nine miles distant in clear weather. And for being about a mile offshore from the light it could be seen much further south-west from the lighthouse when sailing up the coast.

    In the winter there may be ice and snow on the windows, and sometimes condensation on the inside if the vents were not adjusted to best advantage to cause air to circulate slowly over the glass. The keepers used a cloth to apply glycerin to the glass inside and to help keep frost and ice from forming.

    It was most unpleasant to go outside in a winter storm to clear the windows and more so for the tall lanterns of the first order lights, standing on the top rail and holding on to a hand-hold with one hand to then clear the glass with the other.

    An experienced keeper could tell by frequently looking up at light in the lantern at night from a window in the dwelling or from outside in the yard if there might be something up there needing his attention. A less experienced keeper for not looking frequently was often presented with an undesirable sight such as soot blackened glass of lamp chimneys and windows when he finally remembered to take a look. This soot would frequently happen if the wick was turned up too high for not waiting for the lamp to warm up after lighting, the flame seeing more fuel than air needed to burn it.

    Light keeping could be a challenging job and more so if the keeper failed to give timely attention to certain important details. And such details seemed to have a way to become greatly more important when lacking of earlier appropriate attention.

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