The Maine Diaries

Sailing on the Somes

Joan and Rowan. So cute!

OK, not sailing. I don’t know “aft” from “starboard” but I do know the difference from sailing and boating. Today it was boating – I just liked the slight alliteration of “sailing on the Somes.” But it’s more accurate to say that today I was tooling around Somes Sound.


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The front door to our cottage: WindwardCottage#5

Our trip from Portland was happily uneventful. The only “itchy” part was traveling over the Penobscot Narrows Bridge. One lane in

Penobscot Narrows Bridge from Bucksport ME

each direction and open-style railing. For someone with height issues, it’s a challenge. Fortunately, Joseph likes it, so he […]

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Portland in the Morning

This year Joseph and I did something a little different. We usually stay outside the city of Portland but this year we are right in the heart of the city. The center-of-town park is on Congress Square, directly across from the Portland Art Museum on one side and right next door to the hotel on […]

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Portland ME

After leaving the PEM, Joseph and I got onto I95 and headed to a one-night stay in Portland…with a stop at the New Hampshire Liquor Store. Joseph bought red wine and I bought a bottle of Kracken, a very dark spiced rum that’s (I think) 94 proof. Mixed with ginger beer, it’s a one-drink-is-all-you-need cocktail. […]

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The Yin Yu Tang House

With a couple newly found hours to explore more of the Peabody, Joseph and I asked about the Chinese House all the tour guides talked about. The Yin Yu Tang house was almost booked for the day. The next opening wasn’t until almost 4pm. It was a little later than we wanted to be in […]

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The Peabody

At the PEM: The world is in the palm of my hands!

A rocky start to the day at breakfast. Joseph and I were seated quickly, but they were very busy. Somehow we got overlooked. I was being patient (after all, it is vacation), but Joseph was not. When he saw the server taking […]

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Salem – More Than Witches

House of the Seven Gables. Daderot

I was looking for witch-y lore and magic on my first trip to Salem MA on my first honeymoon in 1988. It was just OK and I probably wouldn’t have gone back. However, last year’s unplanned drive through the town of Salem changed my mind. I realized the […]

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2017 WAZE Maze to Maine

Loving my time in New England

Joseph and I did pretty good packing this morning. We left around 9am and stopped at WAWA for some tea and sandwiches. We figured we wouldn’t stop for breakfast so we could get to Salem early enough to tour Fenway Park.

Joseph didn’t map anything out and decided […]

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Maine’17 – It’s Almost Time!

Schooner Head

We leave for vacation on Thursday. However, my mind left about ten days ago. That’s right! I’ve been noticing my mind meandering around some of my favorite Mt. Desert haunts: the Otter Cliffs, Cadillac Mountain, the main drag of Ellsworth, popovers at Jordan Pond – after the Jordan Pond hike, and the […]

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Anemone Caves

Schooner Head Trail

Today started as a lazy day. I finally got to call my childhood girlfriend, Karol. The reception is so bad up here but, finally, I had a decent phone connection. I don’t usually make calls up here, so it doesn’t usually matter. But, this year, I received an invitation to Karol’s […]

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A Walk in the Park

A lazy Sunday morning…one of my favorite things.

Tonight we’re having dinner with cottage owner, Ollie, and I’m looking forward to it.

Joseph and I didn’t want to do any strenuous hiking, but we wanted to do something physical and outdoors. So I picked the Hadlock Pond carriage trail. The trail is 280 feet high, […]

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My Schoodic Treat

St. Margaret’s Chapel Winter Harbor

About fifteen years ago, for five years, Joseph and I rented a cottage on the Schoodic Peninsula. It’s about an hour north of Mt. Desert Island but it includes one of the outlier sections of Acadia National Park. While we were there, we rented a rustic place right on […]

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Am I a Mainer??


Something pretty neat happened as Joseph and I wrapped up today’s hike on the Eagle Lake carriage trail. It was a very cool ending to a full and good day!

But first, we stopped at the Post Office (taxes are due, vacation or no vacation!) on the way to breakfast at Jeannie’s Great […]

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Windward Cottages

Joseph and I meandered up the coast from Portland. We usually make a stop at the tiny lobster shack called Reds Eats in Wiscasset. But the line is usually really long (about an hour’s wait) and we usually meet very interesting people in line. But we decided to pass on going this year. this year […]

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My Friend Robert

Cuckle Buckle Farm

Leaving Rockport around 11am, we stopped for breakfast and then headed for Maine. By midday we were at the liquor store in New Hampshire where we loaded up on two weeks worth of vacation alcohol. You might think we were heavy drinkers. We aren’t. But on vacation, after a day of […]

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Maine Diaries 2016

Enjoying Rockport at Dusk

This year Joseph and I were a little more organized with our pre-vacation prep and packing. We woke up, stripped the bed and made it up with clean sheets. I know it’a a little much for some people, but after a couple weeks away, I look forward to getting into […]

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On the Way Home…

As Joseph and I traveled south out of Maine, we started listening to a book on CD. It was James Patterson’s Sundays at Tiffanys. By around 9pm, we had checked into a hotel and were on our way to Newburyport MA for dinner. At the desk clerk’s suggestion. we went to a place called Michael’s. […]

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Rainy Last Day

Rainy Clarks Cove

The weather people were finally right…they said it was going to rain and it’s pouring down in buckets!

We started getting some packing done and the cottage looks a mess. Time to go home…

Joseph likes to “ease back” from vacation and likes to break the 13 hour trip home into […]

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Last Hike of 2015

Finishing the Upper Hadlock Pond Carriage Trail

Upper Hadlock Carriage Trail

This is probably our last full day. I feel so sad that this vacation went so fast.

We took the Hadlock Pond carriage trail today. It’s about 4 miles. The challenge of the trail is the beginning. It’s uphill and is very steep. […]

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Gorham Mountain

Gorham Mountaintop

The weather says that we’re going to have rain on and off for the next few days. I don’t like to hike over wet boulders, so we decided to take a hike up Gorham Mountain. It’s a good upward climb, but one that we haven’t done since our earlier days here. It’s […]

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Connors Nubble Challenge

At the top of the mountain!

My Favorite Acadia Hike

Joseph and I do this hike, Connors Nubble, almost every year. We didn’t last year because I hurt my shoulder on the first day of vacation and I didn’t want to put any stress on my arm. That was a good thought, because when […]

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My Barr Treat!

On the Barr

I waited years. Even tried to grow one….thought it wouldn’t happen. But, finally! I saw one!!

Joseph and I were in Bar Harbor at 8am so we could get to Barr Island. It’s a small island across from the village of Bar Harbor, only accessible by foot twice a day. At […]

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Sunday Sweet Sunday

Northeast Harbor

We had a relatively lazy day today. We did my favorite Sunday morning things: watched Sunday Morning, read the paper (the actual paper), and watched the Sunday morning political shows.

By early afternoon we were in Bar Harbor doing our laundry. Soooooo exciting… ;-(

But the afternoon got better. We met with […]

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Schoodic Saturday

Walking a path on Schoodic

Ellsworth was today’s first stop, for breakfast at the Riverside Cafe, on our way to the Schoodic Peninsula. Schoodic was once privately owned land that was donated to the county. The main towns are Winter Harbor and Gouldsboro and there are several small harbors including Birch and Prospect Harbors […]

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I Confess…

Sailing at Schoodic

It’s My Dirty Little Secret

OK, we all have one. I’m confessing mine. It’s television shows. And not just any television shows. Mindless ones. It’s an addiction…no, it’s my tranquilizer. Some people drink, others smoke or take drugs, some gamble. I watch TV.

When I was in my early twenties I […]

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Tilley Tuesday

What do you think of my new Tilley hat?

I finally bought a Tilley Hat. I’ve resisted getting one for years, even though I’ve liked how Joseph looks in his. Until now, it just wasn’t for me. A baseball cap was all I wanted while hiking.

Testing out my new Tilley hat

OK, […]

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Blueberries, Books and Binge-Watching

Windward Cottage#5

It’s a lazy morning…typical first day at Windward Cottages. Joseph and I are watching Sunday morning as we let go of work and slide into vacation mode.

This vacation Joseph and I are binge-watching the first season of House of Cards. In this political season, we’re loving it!

Annmarie w/Lis Wiehl […]

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Portland Head Light

Annmarie In Portland

What a good first night of vacation! I had fun, got to visit with friends, started de-stressing and got good rest.

Portland HeadLight

This morning I had some cereal at the hotel (raisin bran with yogurt and froot loops – when was the last time you had froot loops??). Then […]

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Maine Diaries 2015

Perkins Cove Winter

We left West Chester around 8:30 this morning. Joseph has a GPS in his car and we still get triptiks from AAA. But more and more we use WAZE when we travel – even if it’s just for more local trips. It helps avoid traffic jams, tells you what’s going on […]

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Wahlberg at Wahlburgers

OK, I’m resigned to the fact that vacation is over. But I really wanted to squeeze one more thing into it before I head home. One last little adventure.

For those of you who haven’t seen Wahlburgers: it’s a reality show on A&E, I’ll confess that it’s my newest guilty pleasure. Last year it […]

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Heading Home

I’m going to miss looking out the living room window and seeing this view – the trees, the sunlight dancing on the water, sunset on the cover. Joseph and I are having a tough time saying goodbye to Mt. Desert this year – more than usual. We’re both wishing we could stay another week.


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Joseph’s Big “Test”

In our almost twenty years of coming to Acadia, we’ve hiked Cadillac twice and its almost-as-high companion, Dorr Mountain, once. It’s been a couple years since the last time we did Cadillac, but we decided to do it again this year.

It’s our “practice” to save one really challenging trek for our last full day. […]

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Seen Me on YouTube?

I thought this morning’s wet, rocky and steep climb up Day Mountain was a challenge. It was nothing compared to what happened this afternoon.

We were invited to join a couple we know (I’ll call them Cathy and Scotty) for an afternoon on the water. It sounded fun and we were to meet them […]

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Day Mountain Hike

You know how I believe in victory stretches? Today I got two chances to get out of my comfort zone and stretch into some bigger experience!

We’re already feeling sad that vacation is almost over, and we’re determined to make the most of the couple days that are left. After a bowl of cereal, […]

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The Land of Charlotte’s Web!

Saturday is laundry day. So Joseph and I traveled off the island and into the nearest town, Ellsworth. The laundromat got all new washers, which seemed like something good – until we found out there were new rules about the kind of soap and a bunch of other things. Mostly we just like to […]

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Where’s My Muffins??

This morning we went to one of my regular haunts, the Quietside Muffin Company in Southwest Harbor. I first found it from an article I read in the Ellsworth-American. It was about how a woman, Ginny, reinvented herself in midlife (so you know what most grabbed my attention!). I loved the story and checked the […]

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A Perfect Day

As perfect days go, this can be recorded as one of them.

Joseph and I meandered through the early morning, reading and talking. We received an invitation to view the privately owned Kenarden Gardens in Bar Harbor. So Joseph called the owner to see if it was convenient to visit in late morning; it […]

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Jordan Pond Hike

Many of the carriage trails and hikes begin and end around Acadia’s Jordan Pond House. The restaurant, on the shores of Jordan Pond, has been in the park since the 1800’s. Many of the hiking trails and almost all the carriage trails start here.

Today we hiked around the Jordan Pond. It’s a long but […]

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Somes Sound

Today we had the pleasure of tooling around Somes Sound at the invitation of friends Peter and Joan. They have a summer home here and take their boat out a few times a week. When we are up, we get to go with them.

We took off from Northeast Harbor around noon with Captain Rowan […]

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Joseph’s Favorite Hike

It’s Monday and Joseph and I decided it was time to start hiking. I remember my first time on this one, called the Ocean Path. I was fascinated by the fact that it was ocean on one side, forest on the other and beauty all around.

The hike starts at Sand Beach, one of only […]

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Sleeping All Day

After a crazy week of getting our businesses, our house and ourselves ready for vacation, and two days of traveling, we were exhausted! We don’t usually sleep late on vacation but we do nap a lot – an underrated luxury that we don’t get to indulge in most of the time.

First thing this morning […]

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Lobster and Blueberries

After leaving the Casco Bay area, we made our way up the coast to the tiny town of Wiscasset, home to fewer than 1000 families. That’s where the famous “Red’s Eats” is located. The tiny shack occupies one corner of the center of town. It backs up to the Sheepscot River.

The wait it long, […]

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Meandering Up the Coast

We got an early start this morning because I wanted to take a side trip to Bailey’s Island and Orr’s Island, two small islands in the Casco Bay off the coast of Portland. We had a quick breakfast and made a fast trip to Trader Joe’s for some supplies to tide us over at […]

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North to New England

Leaving West Chester around 8am, and after a quick stop at McDonald’s for an Egg McMuffin and Wawa for tea, we headed north. It’s about a thirteen hour drive from my home in PA to Windward Cottages in Town Hill Maine. We’ve done it in one day, but usually we stay overnight in Portland on […]

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Why The Maine Diaries?

“Are you going to Maine again?” and “Do you go anyplace else?” Those are two questions I frequently hear when I tell people I’m going to Maine for my vacation. My friend Robert calls it a pilgrimage; it makes me laugh. But Robert could be right.

It started about 18 years ago. I was wrapping […]

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