nature, photography, on closer examination, fun, travel, adventure, perseverance, moments, a second look, 'scene' along the way, road trip, Camping, making memories

Looking for fall…

On my drive from the Portland area to central New Hampshire I looked for signs of fall in the scenery, and I did see hints of color, especially along the Maine coast.  A little color in the trees here and there, enough to make my heart go pitter-pat. I haven’t been here for fall in a lot of years, and after I wished for, but couldn’t manage, a fall adventure last year, it’s a must for this year.  So my attention has officially  turned from lighthouses to fall.  I really want to see a full-blown fall display before I head back to Florida.  To that end I went looking for more beginnings of fall yesterday, but with limited results.  Mother Nature has her own agenda and she will perform when she is ready.  And I have to remember that not every fall is as spectacular as other’s you’ve seen. But my fingers are crossed for this year, and then I’ll be ready to go home.

fallfoliage2falliscomingfallfoliagefadingflower

Wait, I haven’t seen a moose, I need to see one.  Well, yes I did see one, but it was at the Kittery Trading Post…kitterymoose

 

'scene' along the way, a second look, Camping, donuts, finding my way, food, fun, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, road trip, silliness, travel, Yummy

The Holy Donut

I know nothing at all about marketing, let me start there.  But back in 1990 I became possessed with buying a Ford Explorer, and later on I read that they aimed their marketing to women, so I must be susceptible.  As I drove to the Wild Duck Campground in Scarborough, ME my thoughts were on my fears of what would the road be like? Would I get myself into a situation where my lack of experience in towing a camper would get me stuck?  So I was lost in thought, sitting at a traffic light with only a mile to go, and I looked to my left and saw The Holy Donut on the corner.  I was instantly charmed.  I thought what a great name that was, and then the light turned green, but I vowed to check it out the next day.

Still charmed, I set out to try some the next morning, but it was only then that I noticed their real claim to fame.  They serve Maine potato donuts!  The main claim to uniqueness and I failed to pick up on it.  So on the spot I saw blog post potential, and that meant that I needed a scientific approach to this breakfast escapade, so I bought SIX donuts.  I mean I had to base a post on more than just one flavor, right?  What did I choose?  Dark Chocolate Sea Salt, Coffee Cake, Sweet Potato, Triple Berry Holy Cannoli, Toasted Coconut, and Maine Blueberry.  No, I didn’t eat them all, couldn’t have eaten them all because they are bigger, and heavier, than your average donut.  I cut a wedge from each one to try each flavor, and the only one I didn’t like was the chocolate one.  I love chocolate so I don’t know why that was.  When I bought them I thought that I now had breakfast for the next couple of days, but I kept picking on them that day so I eventually threw out the rest of the box just to save myself.  I have zero will power, at least to sweet treats.  Over the two weeks I was at the campground I also tried Lemon, Vanilla, and the best ever, Blueberry Lemon!  I thought that was so good that I said to myself that I would have that every day for the rest of my stay.  Only it turned out that was the last day of that specialty flavor.  I was so disappointed!  What new flavor was the replacement?  Maine Apple!  Be still my heart.  I could have stayed longer in that beautiful part of Maine, but maybe it’s a good thing that I have moved on, for my waistline at least. secondtryHolydonutsignage2HolydonutbackdoorHolydonutflavorsHolydonutsignageHolydonutvarietiesI came to realize that the van delivers fresh donuts to various local businesses, so you don’t have to go to the store itself.  But then you would miss all the accessories you might choose to buy!

HolydonutaccessoriesHolydonutshirts

The Holy Donut!  Whoever came up with the marketing for this place is a genius!Holydonutenjoy

'scene' along the way, birds, Camping, ducks, egrets, fun, go with the flow, Just do it, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel

Camping…

I’m still in Maine, but when I leave here on Tuesday it will feel like the beginning of my trip home, even if I’ll be heading west rather than south.  A stop in NH, and then on to PA to be with family.   Eventually I’ll have to head south.  I’m procrastinating, wishing to see fall in all it’s glory before I’m back in the land of palmetto bugs and palm trees.

So how was camping?  How did this 100% novice like her first camping adventure?  A lot actually.  I’ve lived in the camper for a total of 11 weeks over the summer, and it felt like home.  I loved it.  Slept like a baby, fell asleep on the couch watching Netflix on the computer a couple of times when it was raining.  But mostly I went out to see as much of the not-Florida scenery as I could.  It didn’t seem like the other campers did much but sit outside, so I guess I was an oddball being inside a lot, but on the computer dealing with photos.  Which is how I spend most of my time at home also.

I didn’t know what to expect from a campground, but with three under my belt I find that they have a lot in common.  The first was The Pastures in Orford, NH.  I probably had the most fun there, but I had family there and got to talk with a lot of people.  They have a pool and playground for kids, plus a great covered pavilion where they hosted breakfasts, pot luck dinners, and Friday night was movie night, complete with popcorn.  It’s on the  Connecticut river, so kayak and canoe rentals were available.  Newly upgraded bath facilities.  It’s a great place and the best bargain.

The second campground was Shore Hills, in Boothbay, Maine.  No playgrounds or  pool, but each campsite was wooded with a lot of privacy.  I was almost surprised to realize how steep the climb back to the campsite was after meandering down to the river to take sunset pictures.  There were lots of options to go out and take pictures, from the Coastal Botanical Gardens to Acadia National Park.  And when you get hungry the lobster roll from Red’s Eats in Wiscasset was to die for.  So good, but be prepared to wait in line.  Found some very nice people there also.

Which brings me to Wild Duck Campground in Scarborough, ME.  I took pictures of the wild ducks of Wild Duck Campground today.  They look pretty tame in the feature photo, all the ducks in a row.  But they all got pretty riled up a little while later.  Plus an egret catching his dinner.  This campground is adjacent to Scarborough Marsh, so egrets are plentiful.  The Audubon center is just down the road.  As is Old Orchard Beach, Portland, and Portsmouth, with lighthouses galore.  It seemed like every time I looked up a place to go it was 12 miles away.  Right next door from my point of view.  What a great spot for a photographer to spend a couple of weeks.

When I do head for home I can follow my trail of breadcrumbs, in the form of lost bath scrunches, face wash soap, underwear (I swear I don’t know where they go), and  lost glasses.  I briefly lost my phone, found my phone, and broke my phone.  Next year I’ll bring half as much stuff and hopefully keep myself better organized.  And there will be another snowbird adventure next year, but where will I go?  I’ll have a lot of time to plan…Egretgotchagotcha2pondscenewilderducks

Did I forget to mention Scout?  He’s a full time RVer.  His young mom and dad work online and have their itinerary set through March, traveling in an Airstream trailer.  I’m told they love it.  Scout sure seems like a happy camper…IMG_9952

'scene' along the way, adventure, bucket list, Camping, finding my way, fun, Just do it, perseverance, photography, road trip, sky, travel

Portsmouth and it’s lighthouses…

Honestly?  I didn’t expect to like Portsmouth, NH quite as much as I did.  I entered from Kittery, ME, and as soon as I crossed the Memorial Bridge I saw brick sidewalks and a small parking lot from which to enjoy the harbor.  So of course I stopped for pictures.  And while it seemed at first to be more of a working harbor than something meant photo ops for people like me, there was more than one vantage point and I thought the views were lovely.Portsmouthharbor1Portsmouthharbor2Portsmouthscene2Portsmouthscene3

I had yet to find the Portsmouth Harbor Light however, and as I drove into New Castle to see it I was awed by the New England charm of the town.  The narrow streets along the water, lined with clapboard houses sitting close to the road, and painted in soft, pretty colors.  The access to the lighthouse was closed, and I knew that, but I thought I’d find another vantage point to see it, and I did.  And, of course, yet another lighthouse, Whaleback, off in the distance eough to make me struggle for a picture.  On such a lovely day it was frustrating to find that I had to turn the picture of that one into a black and white image, but it pretty much was black and white already.PHL4PortsmouthharborlightPortsmouthharborlight2distantlightfarlighthouseB&WPortsmouthpadlocks

I googled the significance of the locks on this chain link fence at the Portsmouth harbor and got an unexpected answer.  It’s been deemed the Portsmouth Love Wall, and it’s in Prescott Park.  I missed the initials written on the locks, initials of lovers who place the locks on the wall and then they may choose to throw the keys into the water.  Or they may place a lock on the wall to represent a lost loved one.  I see that this is a world wide trend, possibly beginning in Paris.  I wish I believed that placing a lock on the wall would keep a loved one with you, it would be nice.  And it just so happens that I have a padlock in the camper, just in case…

'scene' along the way, boats, Camping, fun, go with the flow, Just do it, natural wonders, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel, weather

Perkins Cove…

If I hadn’t dithered so long in the gift shop at Nubble I wouldn’t have even known that Perkins Cove existed, which would have been a shame.  I asked the clerk for suggestions of other places to go for photos, and her face just lit up when she mentioned Perkins Cove.

I knew I’d love it as soon as I drove into the little town.  Like Kennebunk and Ogunquit, the shops and restaurants were charming, sitting as they were at the docks with sailboats tied up, just waiting for someone to sail them away.  And lots of people about too, I half expected Jessica Fletcher to pop out of the little book store, and if you know who that is then you are old, like me!PerkinsflowersPerkinsfrom the bridgePerkinshousesPerkinscommingthrough

Do you see that the bridge is up?  The controls are on the bridge and a sign says that only adults can operate it. The sign called it a pedestrian bridge, so maybe it’s up all the time until someone wants to cross it.  Unlike the campground which is emptying out, this town was full of tourists, shopping in the pretty shops or having lunch on the porches of the waterfront restaurants.

But it was Marginal Way that had caught my attention.  A mile long ‘cliff walk’ overlooking the ocean.  I was so lucky to be there on such a perfect day.PerkinscovePerkinshousescenePerkinssailboat2PerkinssailboatscenePerkins2benchesPerkinslighthouseThis is Little Beach Light, it sits at about the halfway point in your walk.  I just loved it.

Perkinspaddleboarder2Perkinspaddleboarder

I spent a lot of time waiting for this paddle boarder to decide to ride a wave so I could try for some action shots.  Maybe he was shy because he kept letting them go by.  And maybe I’m not the only senior citizen who doesn’t seem to know enough to act their age.

Perkinscove2

My last shot of the visit, taken while sitting on a bench with my back to the parking lot, and eating a coffee kahlua brownie ice cream cone.  The sun felt wonderful, almost too warm and then you’d feel the breeze and it was perfect.

'scene' along the way, a second look, adventure, birds, Camping, fun, Just do it, kayaking, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel

Scarborough Marsh…

I went to Scarborough Marsh a day ahead of the sunset canoe trip, both to see if there was space for me to sign up, and to decide if I really wanted to go.  I had a little experience in a kayak, and absolutely no experience in a canoe.  My hiker/backpacker friend says kayaks are ‘tippy’, but sitting up high as you do in a canoe feels a lot ‘tippier’ to me.  I enjoyed watching the woman in the feature photo as she blew up her inflatable kayak and proceeded to head out on the Dunstan River.  It’s great she says, and weighs in at 40 pounds.  She also said that her husband hates it, which is why she was paddling by herself.  You see how high the river was that morning?  Well, by Friday night it was low tide and our group of inexperienced canoeists were bumping into each other and getting stuck in the mud.  But no tipping!  And no alligators.  Oops, I just thought of a reason to not get an inflatable kayak.

Knowing this was an official Audubon facility had me expecting some big, fancy building, so this little place was a surprise.  But I quickly learned that these people were very professional and experienced, and with a lot of information on how essential the marsh is to the ecology of the area.  Maybe I’ll go back and rent a kayak.  They said if I put in there they’ll know to look for me if I fail to come back.  That seems to me to be a plus.  Taking pictures from the canoe was almost impossible, I thought any move on my part would tip us over.  But I did manage to get a couple that morning, and also on the trip… with the iPhone of course.  I wasn’t about to risk the ‘real’ camera.  I posted one picture on Facebook already, so if you’ve seen it I apologize.marshofficemarshegretmarshdinnermarshscene2marshscenemarshscene4marshcormorantmarshsunset28-30-19canoeDid you notice that the seagull is bringing home the bacon, er, crab?