Done with our fun in Acadia, we began backtracking down the beautiful coastline. Along the way we couldn’t help but notice how incredibly uncreative Maine business owners tend to be. The first sign I saw for “Maine-ly Meat BBQ” made me smile. The second sign for “Maine-ly Realty” was cute. The third sign, “Maine-ly Gifts” was getting obnoxious. The 500th Maine-ly sign I saw made me want to burn it to the ground. Luckily, the other scenery proved more diverse.
Our route took us back through Fort Knox, a historic Civil War reinforcement that we had visited previously. This time around we were able to tour the fort in the dark, an element that changed the atmosphere entirely. Something about wandering around in cold, unlit stone corridors with nothing but the sound of your heartbeat makes ghost hunting believable. Nonetheless, in the sunlight or under the blanket of night, Fort Knox is a magnificent sight to behold. Make sure to check the photos page for more Fort Knox images.
It didn’t take us much longer to reach Camden, Maine. It was here that we had previously met Jack, a motorcycle enthusiast that I began chatting with after seeing his bike parked on the street. His trick looking Hawk GT had so many aftermarket goodies that I simply had to inquire. Not only was Jack happy to talk bikes, he said he had 17 of them in his stable at home! He had given us his number for when we came back through town and we gave him a call upon our return. In no time at all we were getting the full tour of his beautiful house and his exquisite bike fleet. True to his word, nearly 20 bikes were parked here and there - in the garage, in the workshop, and even in the house. I was envious! Highlights of the collection included an MV Augusta, a BMW, a Triumph Bonneville, and two 2-stroke 250cc race bikes - one of which was an Aprillia cup bike (pictured here with Jack). He fired this little screamer up and it sounded like a dirt bike straight out of hell. What a cool toy. The next day Jack even let me take his Honda Hawk GT out for a spin. What a treat it was to be back on two wheels (with a motor that is!). He also shared with us two films: Faster, a documentary on Moto GP racing and Children of Men, a Clive Owen flick. Both were terrific movies and welcome additions to our otherwise lacking pop-culture portfolios. Jack was a filmmaker before retirement so he was able to give us a ton of insight into both of these fantastic pieces. Staying with Jack was a true joy. He is an awesome, friendly character with a fabulous life philosophy - cheers Jack!
It was also in Camden that we had the pleasure of meeting a fellow named Rick. “You guys gunna be around tomorrow?” he asked over dinner, “I’ll take you out for a sail if you’d like.” Lifting my chin from the table I managed to reply “Y…Yea…Yeah, really? Are you serious? That would be great!” You see, I’ve had this incredible inclination to take a spin on sailboat for the past couple months - seeing yacht clubs as we travel has only fueled the desire. The next morning we met up with Rick and his friend Dee and motored out to the marina where a gorgeous 43 foot yacht awaited us. Once we got out into the harbor Rick showed us how to ready the sails - we killed the diesel motor and harnessed the power of the wind. Clipping along at five knots with nothing but the sound of waves against the side of the boat proved to be a most serene and therapeutic experience. In the couple of hours spent in the harbor both Clancy and I had the chance to take the wheel of the ship. Sailing was everything we hoped it might be and so much more. As if our day hadn’t been made already, Dee took us over to check out the Mary Day once we were dockside. The Mary Day was once a working schooner that has since been semi-retired in that the only cargo it hauls these days are people. The boat gives paying passengers multi-day retreats in which they learn about the art of sailing on a historic vessel. Dee knew the owners of the ship and kindly introduced us. She might have helped us express interest in working on such a boat. Hmm…Let me just check my day planner for next summer… Rick and Dee - two fantastically awesome people without a doubt.
After leaving Camden we gobbled up more Maine coastline and eventually hit Portland. The weather turned south in a hurry and we found ourselves getting rained on with booming thunderclaps just overhead. Almost instantaneously, a car pulled over and the woman inside asked “Do you guys need a place to stay?” Louise was her name and she turned out to be quite an adventurer herself. In addition to bicycle touring, she had traveled and sailed to many parts of the world - the Mediterranean most extensively. She showed us around her oh so quaint cabin where she was in the process of moving out. “The place is yours for tonight and tomorrow, you can stay as long as you want.” Then she left us with a bottle of wine and a fantastic CD collection to enjoy the night. The experience reminded us of Steve, a gentleman that had let us stay alone in his house for sale earlier on the trip. He brought us a cooler of ice, some movies to watch, and some magazines to read. I’m really not sure why people are so good to us - I just hope our luck doesn’t run out any time soon.