I’m not an early riser. But at 4:30 a.m. the birds start singing, lobster boats hum past my bedroom window as they leave the harbor, and the dark night sky awakens. I can’t help myself; it’s too beautiful for my eyes to stay closed.
For the first time I can remember, I want to know more about these birds talking. They’re different from Tucson birds. They have more to say.
In the two days I’ve been back in my Southwest Harbor home, I find myself reading in bed as the sun goes down. Last night, I discovered in the SWH Chamber of Commerce summer mag, of all places to actually learn something, that Maine “retains more naturally dark skies than any state east of the Mississippi…The island’s central granite peaks shield the southwestern ‘quietside’ of the island from the city lights of the mainland and Bar Harbor.”
Star-filled nights, northern lights and fireworks over the ocean that you can see for miles.
In the two days I’ve been back I’ve walked Wonderland, where Martha and I lingered on the rocks before our annual dinner at Beal’s Lobster Pound, where the lobsters are carried in traps from boat to dock to a holding tank where summer visitors get to choose their own dinner. The green speckled creatures are lively, They’re not logy like those waiting in foggy supermarket tanks for their demise.
I had crab for my first dinner back.
My friend Judith stopped by yesterday morning when she saw a snazzy white car in my driveway with a strange license plate — New York. “Can’t I have a car with a New England license plate?” I asked Enterprise. Only if you’ll take a black one, I was told. Oh well, at least it’s not New Jersey (sorry Brook!).
I’ve walked Ship Harbor, seen around six friends (who’ve marveled at the purple streaks in my hair. One blurted, “It doesn’t look weird at all!”), went to an artist friend’s reception and started to get my house back in order. And I’ve been told at least three times how much people still miss Oz Books.
Full light: Time to go back to Wonderland — the first walk I took on the island 33 years ago. It’s always time to go back.