Friday Night Running Lights

Most Friday nights are pretty laid back in our house. Pizza and a movie for the kids usually. After they’re in bed, I usually spend some time reading blogs and then tune in to Whale Wars or What Not to Wear, followed by Say Yes to the Dress. Pat is usually watching a baseball game. Pretty exciting stuff. We might mix it up a little by going out to dinner. Maybe “boring” is a more apt description than “laid back”.

Last night was a little out of the norm for a Friday night. The first part went about the same…we went out and found some pizza. Of course, usually the kids have had naps and they aren’t screaming for the pizza to be placed on the table as soon as we walk into a restaurant. Usually we don’t have to leave a restaurant and find one with faster service for fear that we won’t get food before a meltdown by either child. And usually Casey doesn’t yell, “Pee Pee!” between every bite of pizza that I give her. But I give her credit for coming up with her own version of how to say pizza. We perservered and eventually we were all fed and ready for bed.

Casey was asleep before her head hit the pillow. Jack’s way of proving that he is tired is to whine loudly and try every way he can think of to postpone bedtime. In the middle of all this, Mum got a phone call.

Yesterday (July 31st), Calais celebrated its bicentennial birthday. Part of the celebration included the voyage of the schooner Sylvina Beal from Eastport to Calais – the first ship to arrive in Calais bearing passengers in 150 years. The early morning voyage was probably a great ride…the sun peeking through the fog on the river. Also scheduled was a sunset cruise back down the river. Unfortunately it was pouring by the time that adventure was to start.

The phone call was an invitation from our cousin Louie to meet him at his cottage and head out in his lobster boat to meet the schooner. After a long day and evening with the kids, boating in a rainstorm wasn’t immediately appealing. But once promised some good raingear, I decided a little adventure would perk up my Friday night.

Mum and I donned rain coats, pants, hooded sweatshirts, rubber boots and hats and headed down to the boat. Luckily it was a warm evening and it turned out to be beautiful on the water. It was a lot brighter once we got out in the boat and we headed up the river. We stopped at a boat landing to see if anyone else was up for the adventure and we got one taker. We almost tempted the forest ranger to join us, but she decided she should stay and man her post.

A couple miles up the river, we finally saw the schooner. It was a little eerie at first…maybe I’ve spent too much time talking about pirates with Jack. Although, it would be more likely that we were considered the pirates. We pulled alongside and matched her speed. We got close enough for Mum to pass some lilies to someone onboard the schooner and passed some greetings back and forth.

The passengers looked pretty miserable, probably not all dressed head to toe in waterproof gear like we were. They had slickers and raincoats and were huddled in small groups, maybe a few were passing around tasty beverages. It was far from a sunset cruise and it lacked the live music that was originally scheduled but at least we provided a little entertainment. They seemed pretty happy to see us come alongside..maybe because they realized they weren’t the only crazy people out on a boat in the middle of a downpour. And it was still historic despite the weather conditions.

We circled around a few times and watched the schooner head down the river. Despite the fact that the sails weren’t unfurled, it was still an impressive sight.

We’ll probably have pizza and watch a movie again next Friday. It will be hard to live up to the high seas adventure of this Friday. Maybe we’ll get crazy and add some peppers and onions to our pizza. Crazy.

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