Trip Start Nov 15, 2009
2Trip End Apr 20, 2010
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Travelling via Amtrak from East Lansing to Portland, Me has been an enjoyable experience. I am grateful to Meg and K'anna for help in getting to the train and for a nice evening prior to departure in Lansing; Thankyou.
The train is not fast! Freight cars on the same shared tracks often disrupted our speed, and some times stopping us altogether. My first Layover gave me six hours to tool around Chicago. There is no snow in Chicago, but the buildings are still very tall! Lucky was I to discover the baggage storage lockers in the train stations. Apparently, following 9-11 all lockers for overloaded travelers with large layovers, like me, had been removed from transport hubs. I would not have done so well sitting put in D.C. for 9 hours in order to watch my bags, and luckily there was a bag check, though not at all cheap; $40 for five plus hours.
Rolling into Maine, I was sure I was in the right Portland, as I started seeing the brightly painted lobster buoy quickly become common porch decoration
Work commences now on the structure that will house the oven and also taking the time for bread building. Luckily we have access to a well supplied wood shop and the Belfast COOP for good flour. We spent the day today cutting mortises into live edge Locust, that with it’s natural grown shape, will create the frame work for each end of the hoop house structure. I lined the kitchen range with fire bricks yesterday as an attempt to simulate a brick hearth.Despite these efforts, we pulled two sad, dense loaves out for dinner last night after a 2 hour pre heat ( the wood fired component will help with efficiency and oven spring), and upping the starter % in our cold bakery should help stimulate Sourdough activity, but for now, it doesn’t feel like the electric range can heat the new brick hearth hot enuf
In DC: I walked up Delaware Ave from the big train station towards the White House. In a park surrounding the capitol was an enourmously large and noisy group of conservatives that sounded passionate about keeping the nations insurance companies afloat in these hard economic times. I got my fill pretty quickly, and I was on my way to tour the city. For those of you who haven’t been, Washington’s city is a big walk thru museum, with statues and memorials everywhere you happen. Most enjoyable for me was strolling, at night down the central Mall that connects the capitol and the Lincoln memorial; half way down the mall towards the memorial there was a public art piece called “World Climate Change Plan B” and it was a recreation of Noah’s ark with passionate blurbs of graffiti covering the boat. I had time for one other visit. For this, I found and viewed one little section of the Smithsonian Museum of Art; unfortunately, I had a train to catch!
From Monroe, I migrated to S. Thomaston Maine. It is a small coastal town 7 miles from my old stommping grounds of Rockland, and home to friend Joe G. Catching up with old friends and making them new again is so much fun!! Together we would make the trek to Vermont in the days following New Years , although there was a lot of snow forcasted to whiten everything
Next stop, Bread and Butter Farm of Burlington Vermont...