June 11. Finally time to leave the heat and wind that tormented us all spring and fly East. Here we are savoring the lounge at some airport.

But we made it to Bangor by midnight and woke up esconced at WoodenBoat School’s wonderful campus by Eggemoggin Reach–a branch of Penobscot Bay. Here’s our little cabin for the next three weeks.

Very happy now.

I always like to sign up for a course or two in addition to teaching. This year we took Graham Mackay’s Building the Amesbury Dory Skiff. Graham is the Executive Director at the amazing Lowell’s Boat Shop, where these boats were designed and built for eons. Cricket and I will be teaching there this November. There are still a few spots, so sign up quick! Building the McKenzie River Dory  This is the man himself. He is a very fun teacher.

We started by riveting the floors together.

Positively riveting.


Next we built the ribs and nailed them on.

On with the garboards, and then the broad strakes.

Cricket doing a very slick maneuver.

Curls in her hair.

Sunset light on the boats is magical. Every year I try and capture it. Every year I fail. You just gotta be there.

Down the road a little is Naskeag Point, where the sunsets are far more cooperative with the camera.

At the end of the course we joined forces with Tim and Howard, who live just a couple miles from the school on the Salt Pond, to buy the boat we worked on. Here are Tim and Howard getting ready to throw oil her brightwork.

And here’s what happened next. Since Cricket’s birth name was Amy Jane, and it’s an Amesbury Dory Skiff, we named her Amesbury Jane.

Cricket making a class placard.

Tim taking Amesbury Jane out for a test float. She really scoots. She’ll live with Tim and Howard most of the year, then come down to boat school when we’re teaching. It’s kind of nice to have a private boat for after hours operations when we can’t use the company boats.

On Saturday we went out with our friend Mike in his McKenzie boat to run Blue Hill Falls, the tidal rapid between the Salt Pond and Blue Hill Bay. The rowed inbound in the morning and up to Tim and Howard’s. After lunch we ran the rapid outbound. Woot woot!