Apple Cider Time!

cpgrindinglast year we dropped by the neighbors for a quick visit during there cider pressing weekend..  and we immediately made the decision to return for the full day this year.. so glad that we did!     If you study the picture above, you will quickly figure out that this is no ordinary cider pressing operation.   In fact , the entire set up is based around using bikes and people power to drive the machines at each step of the process.   In the picture above, two cyclists are working together to run the machine that chops up the apples..

The apples that are being loaded into the hopper have just come through a washing process that is operated by a single cyclist.    cppresing I have to apologize for the lack of clarity in this pic..  i was riding the bike as i took the picture…  this is the station that does two things..  it provides the power to operate the pump which presses the cider.. and it also  runs the grinder that you see in the foreground..   what is the purpose of grinding corn when running a cider press?   you  might ask..

cplunch can’t answer that question at the moment because it is lunch time!   you will note that this is no small operation..  lots of folks show up for what has become an annual event.. people from California, Michigan, and lots from Massachusetts where Ben, the inventive mind behind all of these machines, went to school..   who would have imagined  that a degree from MIT could lead to a story like this!

While lots of folks were sorting, and washing, and crushing , and pressing apples,  a few were busy preparing a huge pot of vegetable stew  and when “lunch time”  was called, there were a lot of grateful, hungry people ready to eat..  note the use of a cooler to keep the stew hot…  great idea….

cpciderthe effort proves to be well worth it..   there will be cider for everyone to take home…   this is a wonderful example of community gathering and working together for the common good…  nothing like it to generate a sense of camaraderie and satisfaction  and well-being..

During the afternoon, a small group has been working in the back of the barn..  preparing a huge pot of chili ,  apple crisp, and , perhaps you have guessed it,  corn bread!   Now you know the “rest of the story”  as Paul Harvey would say..    not only did we grind corn, but also rye which went into the corn bread as well…

 

CPdinnerTime to celebrate a job well done..  and to eat lots of chili , cornbread and  apple crisp.. with fresh cider to boot…

I can’t make a lot of predictions for the year 2019, but I sure can tell you what we will be doing towards the end of October  a year from now 🙂      Thanks to our neighbors, Emily and David for sharing this opportunity with us…   Life is good in Georgetown!

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Reid State Park – Georgetown Maine

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We have been evaluating life on Georgetown recently… one of the items that is surely on  the positive side is the fact that we are  just 10 minutes away from Reid State Park which happens to be an awesome gateway to the ocean..   ( also a wonderful bike ride when the weather is conducive ).

Today we went to the transfer station – formally known as the dump –  this is at least a weekly social event here on Georgetown as it is elsewhere in New England – but maybe we will leave that for another post sometime!   On the way home we decided to swing by the wharf at Five Islands – I did not take any pictures there, but we were greeted with  the scene of waves crashing around the islands and immediately decided to head to the beach.   We were not disappointed.   I wish that I was able to load movie clips on this blog – the waves were the biggest that I have seen in our time here on the island..

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huge pieces of driftwood were strewn all over the beach..  not the kind that one would collect for a bonfire, but instead, the kind that would demolish the bow of a fast moving boat!

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somewhere out there in that large breaking wave there are two surfers –  as we made our way down to them  we watched as the front half of one of there surf boards washed up on the beach..  they were Colby students, and I think it would be fair to say that they had been pretty beaten up on their ride in.    I don’t believe that the one whose board was still intact had any desire to head back out in the water!

It was a great day to visit the beach – a wonderful reminder of how fortunate we are to be able to live on Georgetown Island…

Goodbye Summer 2018

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One of the projects that I worked on this past summer was this deck in the front of the cottage that we all home – at least for the summer… We have actually had a number of  mosquito-less mornings and evenings to enjoy on the deck..   but just last week we began the move from this cottage to the one where we will be spending the winter.. our second in Georgetown.

During the past few weeks we have enjoyed the opportunity to get on our road bikes  Our first ride was to Reid state park.  it is just 6 miles away, the the distance suited us just fine for the time of day that we left.   I did not have my phone on the ride, so no pics to share.  But we did get to explore the Todd’s point beach for the first time.. it is about a mile beyond the beach that is closer to the park entrance.

Our second ride was the park loop road at Acadia.. we took a day trip up to Mt Desert to visit our friends at the Mt Desert Campground.   It was a beautiful day and so enjoyable to visit for former colleagues there.   The ride around the loop is about 22 miles… It was crowded – and traffic was heavy till we got beyond Thunder Hole.. but after that the roadway was pretty easy to negotiate… These are some pics from that ride…

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we had a packed lunch along with us, and stopped at this turnout to eat…

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We have so many fond memories of the 3 seasons that we spent working at Mt Desert Campground…   a beautiful spot to live and to play!

Our most recent cycling trip was on Westport Island..  the tip of the island is only a mile or so away from where we live..  but it is about a 45 minute drive to get there by car.   We decided to park at Norm’s used car sales and to ride from there..   that made it about a 22 mile drive.    Westport Island is off of rt 1 near Wiscasset.. you really will only end up there if you are intending to go there..  it is a quite town with very few businesses, so the traffic was fairly light compared with the road down to Georgetown.   It was a great afternoon.. beautiful weather..  nice road surface..  a perfect ride.    We met some folks along the way – talked about life on Westport Island..  and even made plans to return the following Monday evening for  pizza at the  Squire TarBox Inn!    I have just a couple of pics from the ride..

a beautiful example of New England architecture..

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Some of the other pics that I took did not turn out so well…   the  pizza on Monday night was delicious..  there was a band playing some blues music , and a nice crowd of locals who obviously appreciate the opportunity to have a place to socialize on what is otherwise a very quiet island..

Another trip that we took recently was to Monhegan Island.. this was not a trip for bikes, but rather, an opportunity to do some great hiking..   A few years ago I posted about a trip to Monhegan with some students…  this was Janet’s first visit.   The weather report called for a foggy morning  which would clear with sunny skies by afternoon..  that never happened, but it was perfectly ok.. we enjoyed  the mystique that began with a 10 mile boat ride through the fog.. to land on this small island, known for its appeal to artists..    it is certainly an experience!

fp9this is a shot looking down on the landing.. there is a great little cafe there  where we got a sandwich and soup while waiting for the boat on our return…

we headed out on what I suspect is the typical hiking pattern of a counter clockwise direction around the island.. fp12

the hiking is great.. lots of cliffs on the east side of the island..  it can be pretty dramatic..

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we made it a good way around the island and then headed back to the village via the Cathedral Woods trail..   we picked this one because it is known for its fairy houses..

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it is so neat to see the creativity that folks put into their creations…

On the way back, the boat captain took us close to some shoals where seals like to  rest on the rocks..   we saw a bunch of them… and then we filled out a customer satisfaction survey on the boat, lured by the prospect of winning a free trip.. which we never win..  except, wait.. Janet Thatcher.. yup.. she won.. looks like we will be heading back next year!

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I just took this photo yesterday..  the light of summer is gone… fall is definitely in the air, even though we still have a number of beautiful days ahead of us… we know what is coming, and it is time to prepare..  maybe a little more wood for the stove ( there are still some standing dead oaks around)   putting the summer clothes in bins and getting the warmer ones out… finishing up some painting projects while we still have some warm air…  all in all,  Life is good in Maine!      comments or questions?     email me at   cp23_1983@yahoo.com