Early yesterday morning I ran out and painted a cute little guest cottage hiding under the skirts of its mother house. Berna Kaiserian had told me about it, and it derailed my carefully-planned day. What a way to go!
The owner of the guest cottage is retired New Jersey Superior Court Judge Philip M. Freedman. He invited me to see the view from his own deck. To the left I could see Eaton’s Boat Yard. The view across the channel was of Holbrook Sanctuary and the town of Brooksville. To my right, where TS State of Maine is usually berthed, I could see out the harbor. At my feet a panorama of daily living unfolded, snippets of conversation floating up to us on the crystalline air.
We watched a brand-new runabout being winched out onto a brand-new trailer pulled by a brand-new truck, and speculated as to whether it was the whole rig’s first outing. We winced as four kayakers dragged their plastic boats across the gravel.
When Eaton’s truck pulled down the alley hauling a yacht, I thought it might radically change my picture. Turns out the crew was waiting for the top of the tide, when they’d put the boat in. Where I come from, boat ramps are generally used by daysailers and fishermen. Big boats are moved by travel lifts or cranes. I’ve never seen a big boat put in on a ramp before.
To hit the boat ramp, the hauler had to negotiate a 90° turn from the narrow alley onto the ramp. But I’d just watched a boat hauler snake a serpentine route between two cars and my garage in my own driveway. But how would they ever get that deep keel far enough down into the water?
Turns out they use a cabling system not unlike the winches on fishermen’s trailers. “That’s deep water. At high tide, it’s 40 feet deep at the float,” the judge told me.
The judge is an encyclopedia of interesting facts. He showed me how to identify the boat on the hauler as a Hinckley. He pointed out that boats were swinging on their moorings because it was the turn of the tide.
At 6:30 we ambled down to the dock to meet Berna for a burger at Dudley’s Refresher . In any setting it would have been a mighty fine burger, but the day’s work, clear air and wonderful sunset made it doubly so.
I set up to paint a nocturne while my friends chatted with passers-by. Various other artists filtered over to join us: Anthony Watkins from Bradley, ME; Daisy dePuthod from Hopewell Junction, NY; my pal Renee Lammers from Bucksport, ME; and Diane Dubreuil from New Milford, CT.
The reception, exhibition and sale are tomorrow in the Alfond Student Center of the Maine Maritime Academy, from 4 to 6 PM. This is as fine an assemblage of painters as I’ve worked with anywhere, so if you’re interested in coastal art, I encourage you to attend.
Let me know if you’re interested in painting with me on the Schoodic Peninsula in beautiful Acadia National Park in August 2015. Click here for more information on my Maine workshops! Download a brochure here.