|A Margo and Judy Joynt|
Okay, so we dressed up all “nautical” for our Acadian Boat Tour. Not realizing how alike we looked until we bought the boarding photo.
Little did we realize that we would have been better served by wearing winter parkas. It was 79 and sunny today, and felt every bit of that on land, but by sea, on a very windy, choppy day, it didn’t take long before we were freezing. The captain offered blankets to all, saying it would be the only free thing we got in Bar Harbor.
Along the way we learned that the Porcupine island which is now all trees was a big vegetable farm, and then we learned that another Porcupine island was all sheep (they can’t swim, so the joke’s on them). We learned a lot about America’s Wealthiest Citizens. And we learned that one island is privately held and the lady won’t sell it. And Cappy said that “the way things are going these days,” he would like to ask the lady to sell it to him for one dollar. And then with his 36 years of naval experience, he would put munitions all over the island, and…
Great! A survivalist on board. His two-hour rap bent to the right and to the fright. He told us how kayakers would enter caves and never come out. He told us that the Maine waters are so cold that when they call the coast guard they don’t give you the water temperature in Fahrenheit or Celsius, they just tell you the number of minutes (20 or 25) you can survive in the water before you die. And he even put a dark cloud on the lobster industry by telling us that at least once a year, a lobsterman’s feet get caught in the ropes and they are pulled out of the boat and they die.
I was wondering if we had boarded the ghost boat by accident. This was supposed to be a nature tour. About live things. We stopped to look at an eagle’s nest with an eagle in it. I never saw it, and I had binoculars. He told us that the female eagle will not have sex with the male eagle until it has brought her a sufficient number of twigs with which to make the nest. He tried to explain this in human terms and said it would be as if his wife told him that they had to have an addition built to the house before…And he said if that were the case, he would have a 32-room house. EEEWWW.
|Egg Island--see the seals?|
We saw some seals too, but they were inert. And some people saw a peregrine’s nest, but I did not.
It was America’s Wealthiest Citizens that I was most interested in. Dead or alive. Astors and Rockefellers and Vanderbilts. They fancied summering in Bar Harbor and built large estates on the water. And they made lots of money during Prohibition because they could smuggle liquor in from Canada. “Canada is just right over there,” the cappy said with a wave of his hand. At least he didn’t say “You can see Canada from my boat.”
In 1947, 67 summer estates on Millionaire’s Row on Frenchman’s Bay were wiped out by the Great Bar Harbor Fire. But we got to see the mmm, mmm good estate that belonged to the Campbell Soup family, and the one that belonged to the Pulitzers. Plus, we got to see an island owned by The Red Lobster family. And an island owned by JP Morgan.
What’s good enough for America’s Wealthiest Citizens is good enough for me and my pal. Summer on the ocean in Bar Harbor.