Traveling to New Hampshire for Columbus/Indigenous Peoples Day for the third year in a row begins to feel like a tradition in the free-wheeling way that’s become my normal. And that started a little over two years ago, the day when reality hit: my husband was gone, and he’s not coming back. The preceding eight months of grieving, of moving in a haze of emptiness were gradually receding as I learned to live without him.
Finding a fellow traveler was a big part of that.
This past weekend we two found ourselves part of the joyous wedding (as weddings are meant to be) of his step-grandson on a hillside looking out at Mount Monadnock. The wedding hit all the traditional markers, yet was uniquely the couple’s own take on those well-worn traditions.
The wedding party – siblings (half and whole) and friends, the grandparents, the groom with his mom and dad, then his step-mom, then his step-dad – all came down the aisle, as the guests sat on folding chairs set up facing the iconic mountain that apparently everyone there (but me) had climbed. Finally, after that long pause when everyone’s turned around watching for the bride – ‘has she changed her mind?’ someone near me murmured, as someone always does – the bride, with her parents by her side, appeared, as satisfyingly beautiful as we all knew she would be.
Marina and Jordan, a couple since they were teenagers, were married by their high school teacher, his first time officiating at a marriage. He began by saying thanks to the native peoples, the original inhabitants of the land we were upon. He told us about the young couple he was about to marry, and his long friendship with them.
Three of the grandparents rose and read poems.
Then Marina, then Jordan, read their vows facing each other, lovely, detailed remembrances of how their relationship had blossomed. My favorite part was when Jordan said he’d written his the first week he’d known her, but hadn’t ever had the nerve to read it to her.
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 16
Cross Country Championships, 4:00-boys, 4:45-girls, Great Salt Bay
Watercolor Journaling, 4-6 p.m., Library
Tanglewood 4-H Camp: Past, Present and Future, 7 p.m., Library
THURSDAY, Oct. 17
Soup Café, Noon-1p.m., Community Building
LIA meets, 5:30 potluck, LIA building, 33 Beach Road
SATURDAY, Oct. 19
Indoor Flea Market, 8 a.m. - 1 p.m., Community Building, 18 Searsmont Road
Intro to Pickleball and Open Play, 9-11 a.m., LCS Outdoor Courts, 523 Hope Road
AA meetings, Tuesdays & Fridays at 12:15 p.m., Wednesdays & Sundays at 6 p.m., United Christian Church
Lincolnville Community Library, open Tuesdays 4-7, Wednesdays, 2-7, Fridays and Saturdays, 9 a.m.-noon. For information call 706-3896.
Soup Café, every Thursday, noon—1p.m., Community Building, Sponsored by United Christian Church. Free, though donations to the Community Building are appreciated
Schoolhouse Museum open by appointment, 505-5101 or 789-5987
Bayshore Baptist Church, Sunday School for all ages, 9:30 a.m., Worship Service at 11 a.m., Atlantic Highway
United Christian Church, Worship Service 9:30 a.m., Children’s Church during service, 18 Searsmont Road
Oct. 22: The Great Disappointment
There were the rings, then the kiss and it was over. The sun, which had been playing hide and seek all day, was dropping rapidly and with it the temperature. Five o’clock on an October afternoon on a New Hampshire hillside is no place to be bare-shouldered. Everyone moved up the hill to the heated tent.
Monadnock Berries, a pick-your-own operation in Troy, New Hampshire, found a clever way to capitalize on their spectacular view. In addition to their ten acres of highbush blueberries and other berries, they have a large semi-permanent tent that can accommodate a couple of hundred people. Find your own caterer, musicians, decorations, etc. and the place is yours for the week-end. Our own Point Lookout has been a wedding venue ever since MBNA decamped, though is about to become a private home.
We were at a wedding venue. There’s a term you never used to hear. Weddings were generally held in a church, the reception perhaps at a community hall or a hotel, maybe in the bride’s backyard. Now a scenic spot is often the choice. The step-mother and father of this groom were married on her parents’ shore here in Lincolnville some 13 years ago, a home-grown affair complete with the bride riding down on her dad’s tractor, a friend playing the bagpipes, with local pastor, Susan Stonestreet, officiating.
I wasn’t there, but the story of that wedding is so well-loved by everyone in the family I feel as if I was, right down to the five-year-old who cried and was carried down the field by his grandpa. That five-year-old is a handsome, young man today, part of the entourage at his half-brother’s wedding. Still just a gleam in her parents’ eyes that day on Lincolnville’s shore, the twelve-year-old in her first high heels, negotiated the acorn-covered aisle on Saturday to stand on Jordan’s side along with her other siblings.
The traditional first dances – bride with her father, groom with his mother – turned into a circle of all the people who’d nurtured the young couple. Mother, father, step-mother, step-father, all those half and whole siblings, the grandparents three, the step-grandfather too.
The reception, which went on into the night, brought almost everyone onto the dance floor. There were no waltzes, no foxtrots, no slow dances at all; these were jump up and down, sing out the lyrics, never stop moving dances. The groom’s grandparents, into their 70s and locally well-known for their dancing, never once sat out a number. At 11:000 when everyone was too exhausted to go on, we boarded a waiting school bus that took us down off that hillside and back to the real world.
Confused at all these steps and halfs, weddings then and weddings now? I was too, but then it’s not my family. Though they feel like family, another branch of my own, and that’s very satisfying.
Watching, trying to keep track of who was who, I could only imagine the many dramas, big and small, that these people had maneuvered through the past quarter century of their own marriages, divorces and re-marriages, integrating each other’s children, including one adoptee from another country, into their new blended families.
I could imagine it because my family is, like so many others, living something similar. To see the harmony this family has achieved, coming together with such warmth and caring over the wedding of two of their own is heartening.
The boys and girls cross country teams have their championship meet Wednesday afternoon at Great Salt Bay; the race is run at the beautiful course at Damariscotta River Preserve. The boys run first at 4:00, followed about half an hour later by the girls.
Cindy Dunham and Jessica Decke, past and current directors respectively of Tanglewood, will trace the history of the camp on Wednesday, October 16 at 7 p.m. Sharing stories, photos and people’s memories, they’ll tell about the role the 1936 Civilian Conservation Corps played in developing this part of Midcoast Maine, as well as its current role statewide serving as a leader in positive youth development.
Last LIA Meeting of the Year
The usual 5:30 p.m. potluck will be followed by a talk with David and Tami Hirschfeld, the new owners of Point Lookout. All welcome!
Indoor Flea Market
The Lincolnville Center Indoor Flea Market will hold its final market of the season on Saturday, October 19 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Community Building located at 18 Searsmont Road, Rte. 173, in Lincolnville Center. In addition to the usual wide array of merchandise, the market will feature seasonal and Halloween items. In an effort to raise money for her daughter's participation in the 2020 Disney World Youth Performance, vendor Betcie Silverio is selling costumes accumulated during her work as a costume director, most recently for CHRHS performances. Her stock includes theatrical and commercial costumes and vintage clothing, as well as hats, wigs, shoes, and props, for kids, women, and men.
The Flea Market is sponsored by the United Christian Church which will be selling a luscious assortment of baked goods, breakfast casseroles, coffee, and cider.
This is not your usual flea market. Come and check it out for yourself. All welcome!
It’s that time again, going into late October, when back in 1844 a group of devout Lincolnville believers were convinced the world would end on October 22. Followers of William Miller, a charismatic preacher, these farmers and their wives sold off their farms and livestock, put away no hay or wood for winter, took their children and trekked up Megunticook Mountain to the cliffs hereafter known as the Millerite Ledges. At midnight they expected to be plucked up to heaven; but when the time came and went they were forced to come back down and face the ridicule of their neighbors.
Each year Rosey Gerry leads a group up to those Ledges, telling stories about the event and pointing out cellarholes and other historical features along the way. If you want to walk up with him, drive up Maiden’s Cliff Road (off Youngtown Road just a ways up from the Youngtown Inn) as far as you can go. The group leaves at 6:30 a.m. Dress warmly!
Halloween Rocks for Scholarships
Marge Olson loves painting rocks and back in her other home in Arlington, Virginia she’s well known to neighborhood children where she gives out a painted rock to every trick or treater. This year she and husband Bob are staying in their house on Beach Road into November, and her Halloween rocks are for sale by donation at the Lincolnville Fine Art and Antiques Gallery next to the Beach Store. In the past few years Marge’s rocks have brought in several thousand dollars for the LIA scholarship fund. The rocks are laid out in front of the gallery. Check them out!
Winding Down at the Beach
This morning at 7 a.m. the tide was way out, and some half a dozen people were wading in the water, taking in the Lobster Pound’s pipe, the one that pulls fresh seawater into the lobster tanks. Last night several dozen people came down for the Pound’s end-of-season Thank You to the Community party.
Meanwhile, across the road Chez Michel is completing its shut-down, this year for good. Free tables and chairs appeared out front one day last week and were quickly scooped up. A big “for sale” sign has appeared as well. Michel and Lillian, their crew and of course, the delicious food will be greatly missed. Best wishes to them!
The Pub remains open, as does McLaughlin’s Lobster Shack, Dot’s and the Beach Store, so Lincolnville Beach is still a good place to get a meal, big or small.
Sympathy to the family and many friends of Mac Pratt, long-time Lincolnville resident, who died on Monday.