Sara Whitman

Still Work To Do

Filed By Sara Whitman | May 18, 2009 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: living in cabin, Maine, percolator, rustic living, still work to do

Life here on the Point is very different. percolator.jpgThere is no drip coffeemaker, with a timer, to have a lovely cup ready the first moment I open my eyes. Instead, a peculator pot sits on the stove and cooks some up.

And I mean cook. There is no elegant balance of flavors when it's done.

The bathroom is not a shuffle away but rather outside. This requires additional effort, socks, shoes, coat, before going. The dog gets a little impatient.

I walk around with about three lighters in my pockets because everything needs to be lit- the fire, the propane lights, the stove. I am all about fire up here.

Every day is marked by where the tide is, at least for me. All I wonder is, can I take the boat out now? How about now? Is now good? It hasn't been very good this past week, I've only been out once. When the water is calm, the tide is out too far to get the boat in. The high tide has been in the afternoon, which has also been fraught with white caps and fog banks.

No, Donald, I did not go out when I saw the fog bank on the horizon.

Yesterday was a hard day for me. I was antsy and wanted to do something other than write. I missed my kids and I wanted to go home. I wanted to be there to make the bagel run this morning, or to cook them some yummy fried egg sandwiches.

It is hard doing this work and it leaves me wanting to move, go, change, do. The challenge is to acknowledge it without actually doing it. I can't leave now, the tides is just starting to shift so the water will be perfect first thing in the morning. I can go out and visit the seals by Strout Island.

And today, finally, the loons are back. I just heard one do is long, sad call- not the crazy cackle, thank god, because that is just too strange. There are two in the cove in front of the house, diving for food. The other day, when the water was rough, the only birds dumb enough to be out there were Canada Geese. Loud squawkers, I've never thought much of their intelligence. They are not regular figures on the water, rather stopping in on their way back to somewhere else.

Everything here in this small, Victorian era cluster of cottages, have names. When we bought this, it was called "Turnstone." There are small birds, called turnstones, that come every year mid summer to stop on their way to somewhere else. The previous owners had a sign, with a hand painted bird on it.

I feel like I am making a stop on a way to a very different place. Something inside has already shifted, although not solid yet. I think that's why I feel the need to move, go, shift. If I stay, it will become permanent. I have migrated so much in my life, never settling in one space for too long. Being able to keep in motion has meant survival.

It's time to stop.

I am tempted to go, but I know that's not in my best interest. I have work to do...

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When you bought it, it was called "Turnstone." Did you give it a new name?

the original name,from 1900 when it was built from a shipwreck's wood for two women "friends" (I kid you not) by one of the women's father (a ship captain himself) was Sea Winds.

There is a sign, hand made by the ladies, with the name on it.

The owners previous to us, the Sellers, had changed the name. They were also the first heterosexual couple to own the place.

Not kidding.

From the two ladies, it was sold to another two ladies, and then to a single woman, each holding the place for many many years. Walter, Allan, Jeanine and I are only the fifth owners of the place.

Reverting back to queer ownership, we thought it would be better to go back to the original name.

I can feel the quiet there. Best to enjoy it while you have it.

Yikes. I could never make it as a writer. I am too wedded to being around people and having creature comforts such as indoor plumbing.

But maybe something could be done about the coffee? When I go camping, I steal the filter cone from my coffee maker. I pack some filter papers along with the coffee. When I want coffee, I put the filter cone (with a filter paper) on top of my coffee cup and boil some water. It takes a couple steps but to me it sure beats a percolator... boiled coffee, yecch.