Back in September of 2011, Cindy and I took a few days off and visited great friends Scott & Karen Dombrowski up in Maine. If you read our blogs frequently, then you’ll know Scott & Karen from our many forays around Cedar Key and the West Coast of Florida on our ‘Tuesdays Fundays’ adventures.
Scott & Karen split their time between Cedar Key during the winter months and Cape Porpoise Maine during the summer months. Pretty ideal if you ask me as they live in a somewhat perpetual spring-like temperature that is what most people long for. When they’re up in Maine, they act as Lighthouse Keepers for the Kennebunkport Conservation Trust that manages the Goat Island Lighthouse amongst many other islands and properties around the Kennebunk area.
We always follow along with the happenings of the Lighthouse on their Facebook Page, and while we were there on our last visit, the island was under major construction with a total renovation taking place. On this visit, the island was quiet and calm with the covered walkway between the Keepers Quarters and the Lighthouse having been completed. The grass was lush and freshly mowed, the house looks so different, it was hard to even imagine how it looked before. The place is immaculate and is truly a gem to visit. Kudo’s to the Conservation Trust for tackling this project and restoring such a valuable piece of history…and especially leaving it open to visitors to paddle over and be able to walk through on a daily basis.
Our lighthouse here in Cedar Key is only open a few times per year. Those days the tour companies that provide boat shuttles out to the island are swamped with visitors coming from all around Florida and the country for that matter. The Goat Island Light is open year round, and as long as Scott or Karen are out on the island when someone pulls up to the dock, then the visitors can climb the historic iron stairway to the top of the light and take in a magnificent panoramic view of the Atlantic Ocean and the quiet, picturesque Cape Porpoise Harbor.
Cindy and I spent hours upon hours just wandering around the house-sized boulders that protect the island from the Atlantic’s relentless saltwater pounding. We both joked about how amazing it must have been for Scott and Karen’s children along with the other Lighthouse Keepers children to spend their childhood years running around these boulders. Here we are as adults having a blast. As kids, they’d seem twice the size and would be the ultimate childhood playground.
The lighthouse was refurbished in the 1950’s era fashion, so the appliances look like retro models, but are up to date when it comes to the efficiency of the working parts. One afternoon was spent in 1950’s style lawn chairs that reminded me of my youth. Not that I was born in the 50’s, but my family always had old stuff, so we were still using 1950’s style lawn chairs in the 70’s when I was a kid. We sat on these lawn chairs all afternoon with the warm fall sun keeping us comfortable in our sweatshirts while the dogs entertained us on the lush lawn. Karen has a very energetic Australian Shepard that can leap off the ground head high when chasing a Frisbee. Since I see photo opportunities in EVERYTHING I look at, this kept both Karen, Follie (the dogs name) and me busy for quite some time while Scott and Cindy sat back laughing and encouraging the dog and Karen.
The evenings were cool to almost chilly where a sweatshirt was mandatory for Cindy and I with our thin Florida blood. The moon was full which meant the tides were crazy high to crazy low, and the sky was bright enough that sitting up in the lighthouse at night, we could see the harbor like it was a overcast day outside. We stayed up late into the evening taking photos, philosophizing on life’s priorities and just how lucky we are.
One long conversation, and I mean a few hours worth was on the topic of ‘Do you think people know why they were put on this earth?‘ The depth of this conversation went wild and in so many directions. Luckily, after over 20 years of being beside one another almost constantly, Cindy and I can still talk for hours upon hours about the littlest of things. We’ve both found our purpose in life, and we both agree it’s simply to live it beside one another no matter what state of mind, income level or hard/good times we’re going through.
I could talk on and on for hours about how much fun we had, but I don’t think I write all that well, so I’ll just let my images speak for themselves. Thank you Scott & Karen for your hospitality. Thanks Craig for the Lobsters and thanks to the Kennebunkport Conservation Trust for keeping this island and lighthouse open to the public.