MAINE. Mount Desert Island is one of my favorite summertime destinations. I have a routine there.
In Acadia National Park, I camp at Blackwoods Campground, by the ocean. I camp in a tent and while not overlooking the sea, my campsite is generally within in few minutes walk to an overlook. I take my coffee there and contemplate the waves. In one morning revelry, a porcupine climbed over a rock and almost touched me, but it disappeared in a flash. (I suspect I surprised the porcupine.) Sometimes, people don’t lock their food supplies at the campground and that can lead to surprises too!
I drive to the summit of Cadillac Mountain and stare out at the view in all directions. Walking around the summit and along the craggy trails, I often wish I came here more often. It is a long drive up to the summit, but the steep drive down can seem even longer. I stop in at Bubble Pond and enjoy the serenity. Then I drive to the smaller and more crowded Jordan Pond where I walk the loop trail around the pond, and then sit down for afternoon tea in the gardens of the guesthouse overlooking the pond. Walking and bicycling trails abound in Mount Desert Island; I usually try one new trail, but I like my routine.
In the downtown area of Bar Harbor, I admire the boats. I study the exhibits at the small whale museum. I never plan ahead and routinely find the whale watches and Friendship Sloop rides are full. I watch the people mill about. I poke around the tourist shops and usually purchase something fun and superfluous. Sometimes, I stop for a plate of fresh seafood. I almost always decide on a cone of Gifford’s blueberry ice cream. The small but quaint George B. Dorr Museum of Natural History is on the outskirts; if it is open, you are in luck.
After my last night of toasting marshmallows and last morning of coffee overlooking the sea, I pack up my tent and head to downtown Bar Harbor again. I sit at the park and look at the ocean for a bit, and then I walk ten minutes to my favorite breakfast spot (Jordan’s) that specializes in blueberry pancakes. I sit at the counter and watch the experts make up pancakes galore. It’s part of my routine and tasty too. It is always with some regret that I depart, which is probably why I return.
“When you leave a beautiful place, you carry it with you wherever you go.”—Alexandra Stoddard
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