Upper & Lower Goose Islands....and the Goslings, Harpswell
So, you know they say, there are several markers in each person’s life that change our trajectory?
Things that change our direction, change the path we had been walking.
Things that show us who we are, what we love, or what we hate.
Things that show us SOMETHING.
And if we pay attention and heed their message, we are generally better for it.
I’ve known Captain Bill since our twenties. Distantly. Quietly. Occasionally.
And then, twenty years later, he’s back. Back in my life.
And I begin to go out on his boat from time-to-time with my husband…for my husband.
But then, after a few years, of quietly-distantly-occasionally, I am hit with a hammer beside my head.
Pay attention, I realized….several years later.
And his boat.
Are one of my markers.
Being on Bill’s boats, on Casco Bay, cruising among our islands, heading to Harpswell, Boothbay…have brought me to life. I have been so grateful and appreciative of being on the ocean, breathing it all in, sitting on my seat aft on the cushions behind the main salon. “Kim’s seat,” it’s now called.
I’ve been so taken and swept away by my experiences that I have felt compelled to share what I was seeing, smelling, hearing, experiencing. It is the most beautiful scenery I have ever seen to be out on the ocean with Bill, heading up the coast of Maine.
My writing and photography began to encompass what I was experiencing on the water and then, as a natural progression when you begin to get on your right path, my writing went up a notch.
I was in the rhythm.
I’d found my niche.
It was comfortable because, for me, it was authentic. I’d found what was real for me.
And so came my latest book - Eventide.
Its back story for how the book came about is a blast – so funny, so cool.
Typically, I write nonfiction, but I took a risk (wind in my hair) and imagined (having the space to be in my own head, sitting backward, aft, watching the wake of the boat, looking back at where I’d been) and I shook it up by seeing new places, places I knew nothing about (The Dolphin, Harpswell, Jewell Island Cove, In-Through-the-Out, Admiral Peary’s Eagle Island, the Cuckholds).
Eventide came to me quickly when the group told me I “had to write it,” what we’d been poking fun at for two years.
And I immediately knew I must.
I immediately knew how it would end. The twist.
All was crystal clear to me.
No effort. Seamless.
Murder. A twist.
Maine history and geography shown among a cast of “real” characters. And I would showcase the beauty of the Maine coast Bill had shown me.
I had to share it.
And so, we did it. Nothing is borne of one person, but all is likely a culmination or collaboration of several coming together under the right circumstances, at the right time, in the right place.
On the 4th of July 2018, good friends Bill and Sue, invited us on the boat. And stimulated my imagination and love for our coast and state once again. They invited us for a few hours, or all day long into the night watching fire works on the Eastern Prom if we were so inclined.
Early morning, when Commercial Street was just starting to ramp up for the day, we headed out. Packed the fried chicken, red potato salad with dill, Chardonnay, Vodka + Tonic, limes, brownies.
To Goose Island Cove near Harpswell.
And beside Goose Island are The Goslings. How cute is that??!!! Three small, uninhabited neighboring islands to Goose Island with easy anchorages and white sand beaches. Good local folks, so common in Maine, are looking into how to put these treasures into trust for further public use and keeping them as pristine as they are now.
The Goslings comprise East Gosling, 8.6 acres in size; West Gosling, 4 acres; and 1-acre Irony to the east.
The cove is sweet. Quiet. Beautiful.
Our weather was, not to be clichéd, but…perfect.
Blue waves on the ocean, shallow green swimming water close to the shoreline and seaweed-covered rocks.
Quaint and magnificent island homes. Weathered gray shingles.
Ocean kayakers and paddle boarders in the cove off Goose Island.
Swimmers jumping off boats, floating in tubes, because, man, it was hot on the 4th.
Ocean water was actually seventy degrees which is unheard of in Maine.
What a beautiful cove, with so few of us sharing it. We moored and hung out for the day. Of course, I took 100 photos. Frank and Bill ("two bald guys") swam for so long – all around the boat, floated, laughed. (There were a few jokes about whether it was safe to be in the water leaving me, author of the murder-on-the-sea Eventide, with access to the helm! Felt a little creepy to the guys…..wah wah wah!!)
Good music (our “old” music) played from Bill’s speaker as the sun shined; neighbors on their boats enjoyed the day; we talked and laughed, relaxed.
Maine is filled with coves just like this one to explore, hang out, relax and just be.
Vacationland is a good tagline for Maine…..but I think just be might be better.