Wednesday - Another bad nights sleep; I envy Berni's ability to sleep. Up at 4:15 AM to the flyaway by 5:30. In line at United by 6:45. Wendy is singled out for extra security screening. May be my fault I made the reservations and used Henry turns out Wendy has not been to the DMV, I understand I never go there either if I can help. She brought her marriage license but anything unusual brings extra screening now a days. They had a separate area where they X-rayed her luggage before they would check it on. It was very strong because they wanted all film removed. I went ahead because the bathrooms were beyond security. My belt buckle beeped the metal detector so I got a thorough going over with a hand held metal detector and a pat down and shoe inspection. There is no doubt security is much improved, boredom is still a problem but it is much tighter than when I traveled to Italy in December. I sat down in the gate area and noticed a guy with a Weber Aircraft bag and struck up a conversation. It turns out he was retired from Weber and headed to Boston also. Weber was one of the small companies that surrounded Lockheed in Burbank. We talked about the demise of the aircraft industry in So Cal until the girls showed up. As we sat there the woman setting next to me asked if I was lived in Sunland? Turns out she was a year behind us at Verdugo; her name was Nancy Burch then. She and her husband Bob Fauntleroy are headed to Hawaii; it's a small world. Berni jumps into rhe conversation and details of their five kids Idaho home come to the fore. On the boarding ramp where they made Wendy empty her carry on examined every item even her shoes. We boarded and it took almost 30 minutes before they let Wendy on. This lead to much anxiety for her dad. They talked about closing the doors once. Yeh! They let Wendy on the aircraft. We then sat at the gate for what they said was a baggage computer mismatch. A guy was removed from the plane and the flight attendant had to verify the carry on's in the bins by this guy and when one piece was not immediately claimed the flight attendant called forward to stop the plane. A guy several rows forward IDed the bag as his so we were finally on our way 40 minutes late. The plane was only 50% full so I bid the girls a fond farewell and went to the back and claimed 3 seats. My anxiety and mood improved immediately. The meal was breakfast pizza, pastry crust with egg, cheese and peppers not too bad for airplane food. The movie was "Ocean's Eleven " we had all seen it but was a pleasant diversion. The captain apologized for the initial delays and put the pedal to the metal, he made up 30 minutes and a nice landing in gusty wind made it a good flight. It is 93 degrees in Boston; they are having a heat wave. Picked up the bags and got the car a Dodge Intrepid, nice car. Logan is always under construction this was worse than usual. We took 1A north, which avoids the tunnel .we, took several side trips to see beaches for Berni. We are ahead of schedule. We have dinner reservations at the Hawthorn Inn in Salem. The B&B Owner in Kittery where we are staying tonight recommended it. A very nice meal I had swordfish and a glass of Australian sauvignon Blanc. We split a Boston cream pie three ways. Berni's navigation got us to 'Enchanted Nights' B&B. After trying keys in wrong doors we find our rooms, we are trying to be quiet and hoping at 11PM we are not disturbing people. Off to sleep at 11:45.
Thursday - They have cable here so I watch 'Sports Center' and catch up on the Dodger and Lakers, Berni is thrilled. Breakfast at 9 so it's a leisurely morning. We meet Kevin and Mary Ann firefighter, from Massachusetts. They are very out going and high energy. Much cooler with fog and overcast. Breakfast was eggs, toast and jelly pop over. Wendy and I are both missing fruit. This is going to be a shopping day; I've brought 6 books. Kittery has over 100 outlets; Berni and Wendy have a battle plan. We stop at one of the old forts and take some pictures before the shopping starts. We take several pictures. Great view of the harbor lots of lobster traps in the water. Then it's to the outlets. One of the outlets has Brio so I see if there are any deals, no deals, but Brio is always fun to look at, outlets are often like that I'm not sure I understand their popularity. We have a late lunch at a family style restaurant good value. The girls go antique shopping in the afternoon in Kittery and Berni finds this Chocolate shop. This place is great. It's run by a lawyer who opted for a more fulfilling life style. She moved from Minneapolis to marry a Swede from Maine. A great lady, great samples and great chocolates. We dropped a few dollars there I tell you. We returned to the B&B and the girls decided that the Seacoast Repertory Theater presentation of 'Midsummer Nights Dream' would be a good idea since none of us were interested in dinner off we went. Due to some interesting navigation it took us 25 minutes to get to a place that took us 5 minutes to get back from. Shakespeare needs Clift notes I think. The most amazing thing about the play is the flutist child. The flutist had what looked like 6 to 9 month baby in a sling; the baby didn't make a sound through out the entire performance. The play was entertaining, Puck stole the show. Parking is difficult in Portsmouth so we had to walk a ways. The girls got in some window shopping on the way back to the car, Wendy saw something she needed to come back for in the morning. We get to bed around midnight.
Friday - This is a travel day. Kevin and Mary Ann have gone home so a much quieter breakfast. Back to Portsmouth, this time the right way 5 minute drive. Wendy finds her patio chandelier, they will ship which is good. I'm starting to get a little concerned about lugging all of this home. The drive to Brownville is un-eventful. We stop at Angie's a restaurant in Milo for lunch. Fried scallop dinner. We get to Gwen's about 3 PM. She is having another bout with cancer. She has just had another CHEMO treatment and it didn't go well. It is not the best of visits but we do not tire her out too much. We traveled up to Medway and checked into the Gateway Inn. On the way up we encountered a deer on the road, the stupid thing bolted across the road behind our car and in front of the truck behind us, no impacts occurred but it did underline the biggest traffic concern in Maine wildlife. According to the manager at the Gateway Inn the best place to eat is the Irving gas station? We settled in then tried to call Terrina but of course the phone was busy (3 girls). We drove over and said hello. Paul and I talked sports, baseball is near and dear to Paul and in his all female household talking sport to another man is a treat. They have turned their basement into a rec room and bedroom for their oldest daughter Kristen, a very nice setup would love to have a space like that for my trains. The girls were excited to see us (Wendy) and we kept them up at least 2 hours past their bedtime, which I'm sure they loved. We went back to the Irving gas station and had some soup not bad actually.
Saturday - The weather has cleared and we have great view of Mt. Khatardin the tallest mountain in Maine. I get up shower and walk down to the gas station for breakfast. The 4-3-3 four sausage, 3 eggs and 3 pieces of toast $4.99. The girls were having a leisurely morning, which proved to be an error. The hot water heater failed sometime in the morning and both Wendy and Berni got cold showers. We showed up at Terrina's around noon for lunch and more time with the girls. It is a beautiful day so I spend some time playing baseball and basketball with girls they seem to enjoy it even though I'm really slow. Lunch consisted of egg salad, ham, tuna and chicken very good. We called Reggie around 3 PM. We found out we were late for dinner so we headed for Fort Kent. We arrived around 7:30 and Reggie had chicken stew waiting. A very good meal as usual at Nina's. We played some cards them off to Daigle's B&B for a good nights rest.
Sunday - Omelets at Daigle's this morning. There is a Bulgarian family staying at Daigle's; the mother is mathematics' professor who is checking out Fort Kent, she has been offered a position at the U of M in Fort Kent. It is snowing this morning so she is a little apprehensive. When she finds out we come from the 'left coast' she starts pumping us for information about Stanford. It turns out her oldest son may be going there. We go up to Nina's and take her to the 11AM mass. After mass we go to Lake View for lunch. A very big and very good lobster roll for me. It is cold and windy but still a great view of Long Lake. We dropped Nina off and returned to Daigle's for some rest. Nina had light dinner at her place; ham Rolls, deviled eggs and vegetable beef soup. Lionel and Martha came over and we played more cards. We played to 10 PM.
Monday - We have Daigle's to ourselves this morning so we catch up with Doris and Elmer we have been here so many times we're almost like family. I went up to Nina's and kept her company until the girls returned. We took a field trip to Edmunston. There was the three of us plus Nina and Florence. The first stop was Susan's (Florence's daughter) health food store. She has just taken it over from a Yoga instructor who owned it previously. The girls never miss a chance to shop and bought several items. Susan suggested a nice little cafe La Zarac where we had lunch. I had a turkey sandwich and a slice of quiche. Lots of French on this side of the river but they do speak English with a very cute accent. We drove around Edmunston and scouted out our route into New Brunswick. We returned to Fort Kent and I took a nap. The girls walked to downtown to buy Berni a new nighty she left hers in Medway. They stopped in at Reg & Janell's for a talk. Reg was working on his "Pearly Brook Condo". This is his old camper shell which he is converting to a refuge from the rain. It will be a warming and coffe hut for his wood cutting activities on Pearly Brook. They got a ride from Reg back to Daigle's. When I woke up from my nap I went up to Reggie's and talked to Reggie and Florence. The girls eventually showed up. We have a light dinner of deviled eggs and ham rolls and homemade vegetable beef soup. They are leftovers from lunch, which have somehow miraculously expanded. We have all claimed Nina's a saint and this is more proof. A raspberry pie has appeared as well. I need to write for the recipe. We end the evening playing cards at Lionel and Martha's. Their daughter Ann was there as well which made for a very good evening. Martha served a homemade strawberry-rhubarb pie an Lionel served Korbel champagne.
Tuesday - Another quiet morning at Daigle's. I do some walking and go down to the train station for some pictures. The girls visit while I'm gone. We go to a little restaurant in Frenchville for lunch at Rosetts. They had these really great puzzle placemats. You had to find all the states in a sea of letters. It took us about 30 minutes but we found them all! The girls went to Nina's while I drove back to Frenchville to photograph the water tower. I have grand plans to scratch build a water tower and station for this new layout I'm planning. We have dinner at Phil's and Flo's. Florence makes her fiddlehead and salmon quiche (excellent). The rest of the uncles show up for coffee and dessert. Jan is also there but Peter stayed home with a bad back. Jan is the life of the party and regales us with some of her driving escapades. Reg's new Pearly Brook condo comes up for discussion as well. We head back to Nina's for some final conversation; she doesn't want us to leave and is trying to squeeze the last drops out before our morning departure.
Wednesday - One last breakfast with the Daigle's and a farewell to Nina and Flo and it is off to Canada. We cross at Edmunston and it takes a little longer than most who cross because Wendy wants to get her passport stamped. This of course is almost never done, they have to find the stamp set the date etc. But she has a record of when she entered Canada. We head east and south on 2 which is a freeway in Quebec, I was concerned about this we like to use small country roads if possible, in New Brunswick 2 is a country road. We stop at Grand Falls, a water fall in the St. John River. A neat place with a hydroelectric plant hidden out of view. The second stop is in Hartland a little town with the longest covered bridge in the world. We start looking for lunch. Berni sees the Fiddlehead cafe, which turn out to be a Very smoky bar. Wendy and I get funny looks on our faces so we move along. I spot what looks like businesswoman leaving a B&B. They are serving lunch at the Hatfield Inn and it is smoke free and very cute. We all have the special of the day salmon salad sandwiches. Excellent! I try the graham cracker pie. Vanilla cream filling with a meringue topping in a graham cracker crust very good and a local favorite as well. The girls spot some watercolors by a local artist; the innkeeper informs them her gallery is just down the road. An hour later we are back on the 2 with several new watercolors in our trunk painted by a talented loquacious (girl's claimed she wouldn't stop talking) retired nurse. We arrived at St. Andrew and the Canadian Pacific Algonquin hotel without further incident. We take a quick look at the town then check in and rest up and get ready for dinner. Their big dining room is closed but their smaller room the "Library" suits us nicely. I have beef Wellington and we split some chocolate thing for dessert. Off to bed no sportscenter just all hockey all the time in Canada Hey!
Wednesday - Continental breakfast is included with the rooms but after consuming that we order real breakfast. While we eat we watch the staff doing fire safety training by doing fire extinguisher relay races in the parking lot. Great fun. We check out of the hotel and head to St. Andrew for 2 1/2 hours of shopping. I read, nap and walk. We head back to the USA. There have been many horror stories told about delays but our crossing is uneventful and quick. We drive down route 1 stopping at the Bluebird family restaurant in Machias. We got to Acadia national park and saw the 15 minute overview film before the visitor center closed. We called the B&B to see if there was enough time to do the park loop before we checked in and he said definitely not, so we went to the B&B to check in. Roger the innkeeper is a real trip. A retired engineer, he is wound very tight. Lots and lots of rules. Turns out Roger is a retired engineering professor from MIT. It shows. We drive back to the park and drive to the top of Cadillac Mountain. Very impressive view but cold and windy. We complete the loop and take lots of pictures before returning to the B&B. We walk downtown past a lot of closed enterprises. That is one of the themes of this trip, April is too early, almost everything is closed until late May. We end up at a restaurant called Gaylns and I get the 2-lobster dinner, one of my favorites. Great meal. We have eaten well on this trip. We walk back and pass a nice old art deco movie theater that is hanging on against the multiplexes open May through October of course. It is cold and supposed to snow tonight, we will see. We have a fireplace in our room so I fire it up and Wendy joins us and we talk and read. No TV here we think Roger wants you to expand your mind. They had Canadian sportscentre at the Algonquin, I'm starting to show sports withdrawals. It is very neat going to sleep with light from the fireplace flickering on the walls.
Thursday - It snowed a lot last night. Looked to be 5 inches and it is still coming down. I'm a little worried about driving but the innkeepers say it will be gone by noon. They have been plowing the roads. The street in front of the B&B is clear. I go outside and take a bunch of pictures. Raspberry pancakes for breakfast very good, I have a good time talking with Roger about Architecture but the girls hear conversation with one of the other couples where one of Rogers reservation rules was violated. It was not looking good for them until Rogers wife got in the picture. One thing about staying in B&Bs is you meet all types and Roger was certainly unique and as eccentric as they get. Roger showed the girls a brochure on Tiffany stained glass windows in the local Episcopal Church. The original pastor of this church built the home, which became the B&B we stayed in. It turns out Roger and his Wife are members of this church as well. We stop in. It is open and it has one of the most striking collections of stained glass windows I have ever seen. 10 of the windows were made by Tiffany. The girls must have shot two rolls of film in there. We drove down the coast towards Newcastle. We stopped for lunch and had lobster rolls again. After some confusion about where we were staying we found the B&B in Damariscotta. We have nice room with a great view of the river. They fix a gourmet dinner at this place. We change into presentable casual and head off to hors d'oeuvres. The meal is spectacular. I have lamb loin; Wendy stuffed chicken breast and Berni salmon. Crab cake appetizer, mango sorbet to cleanse the pallet before the entree and in my case honey lavender Crème Brule. The girls had chocolate soufflé. A superior meal in all regards. We changed after dinner and watched the moon rise over the river.
Friday - I was up early. This place has a TV and ESPN so my morning is a success. The Dodgers are having a good road trip. Missed the Lakers score in Canada but if they had lost it would have been a bigger deal and I would know. Breakfast is blueberry French toast (Maine blueberries are smaller than Oregon blueberries) and fresh fruit with honey yogurt. The food at this place is the best I have ever had at a B&B. We head south and have one last lobster roll in York beach. We eat at a restaurant overlooking Cape Neddick's Nubble Lighthouse. We take route 1A back to the Airport, it took a little longer than we anticipated. We are still at the gate 1 1/2 hour early. No extra screening for Wendy so the stuff in LA may have just been a random check. The plane is a 767 with 20 people in coach. This is great for us but United is losing lots of money on this flight. We get to see "Kate and Leopold" which Wendy and I both like and Berni says is stupid. They also show "Oceans Eleven" again this is a 5 hour and 45 minute flight. I try to sleep with no luck. Berni is doing much better in that area. We are off the airplane at 9:30 PM and picked up by Erik at 10 PM and home by 10:45. Started some whites, no clean underwear and off to bed.