Category Archives: Reflections

The call of the elver, eel fishing in Maine rivers.

Dim shapes move back and forth along the banks of the river, distorted by the wavering light of kerosene lanterns. Moonlight shines on a crowd of gauzy structures supported by bits of twine. Nets and tents are illuminated from the lamps inside, and a bonfire is sending neon orange sparks into the sky. This is […]

Is it re-purposing or senseless destruction?

Like many DIYers, I frequently cannibalize one thing to create another. Buttons from a much-loved coat, torn beyond repair, became the closures for an artist book I was working on. Cast aside planks were turned into painted bootjacks, and yes, I have a necklace made out of old clock gears. Where does one draw the […]

Weather proverbs, a true or false quiz

Weather is a favorite topic of conversation in America, it is safe, not likely to get people wound up, and always interesting. Weather lore has been around as long as there has been weather and people to talk about it, and I will take a weather conversation over politics any day. New Englanders have a […]

But Officer, my teacher told me to

  The four-years compressed into one-year learning extravaganza called the Maine Master Naturalist Program has gotten me into trouble more than once. I have been attacked by toe-biting insects and found myself deep in the woods with an angry goshawk. My last assignment had me talking to the police, or, had them talking to me. […]

Don’t let that snow get away! Preserving snow crystals is easy (or so I was told).

  I live for snow. I am not a skier, I just love walking in the stuff, sitting outside with a book and tea in the white, and taking far too many photos of things poking up through the snow, draped in snow, casting shadows on the snow… (Oh, if you are here just for […]

What is ice fishing really about? At Great Pond, it is not just the fish

American flags on a jeep

400 plus souls gather in a field of ice. Three boys toss a ball for their dogs. A silver-blue Miata cruises with its top down. Fires dot the expanse, and a small group huddles around each one, warming hands and roasting hot dogs. It is the annual Great Pond Fishing Derby. Fish are the reason […]

Life behind a nametag: Do you wear your name on your shirt?

In decades of being gainfully employed I have never* had to wear a badge with my name on it. I never really thought much about them. The bag girl at the local supermarket has one, flight attendants wear them, my daughter had polo shirts with her name when she drove a team of horses, and […]

Ferns, feathers and the Maine Master Naturalist program

Natuturalist tools

Ferns, trees, wildflowers, dissecting kits, owl pellets, field guides–how could I not be in? The Maine Master Naturalist Program offers intense, wide-ranging study of, well, all things natural, and in Maine. I applied the day applications opened, and was fortunate enough to be one of nineteen adventurers accepted into the Mount Desert Island Program. Oh, […]