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A Lighthouse and A Cathedral-by-the-Sea

October 5, 2012

Maine – Tuesday, Oct. 2

After breakfast at the motel, I backtracked 12-15 miles because I wanted to see what I drove through in the dark. plus I wanted to get on the road right by the ocean. So I drove back to York Harbor, and there I saw my first Maine lighthouse – the Nubble Lighthouse (named for the nub of rock on which it stands). It’s on a little island and is not accessible to the public, but the island is only a stone’s throw away so everyone can still see it well. It’s made of white cast iron, and I’m pretty sure I’ve seen a picture of this on a calendar or in a book! And there was a little basket sort of thing on a pulley from the mainland that maybe they use for supplies or something. There was a nice little park and a visitor center, and lots of people! They had a sign outside the front door asking for donations to help with upkeep of the lighthouse and park grounds, and I wanted to do at least one donation that was lighthouse-related because of all the rich history connected with them, so I decided to make that my donation-of-the-day. After I had soaked all of that up, Tula and I went for a walk in the neighborhood right near by, then drove back into the actual town of York and walked some more – both in town and out along the bay. The town is clearly a summer resort town, and it was very quiet on a Tuesday in October. It almost seemed a little forlorn with all the summer activities just a memory. It was very easy for Tula and I to get around – we covered 3 miles altogether in York.

Then I followed the coast up to Kennebunkport, which was absolutely crawling with people – such a difference! It looked like a fun town to wander through despite being very touristy, so we parked a ways away (too congested in town with tour buses and all their people) and wandered through town, and then found a road with a nice sidewalk leading out of town along the little bay. It was such a pleasant day and there were so many marinas and boats to see that we just kept walking. Then I could see the top of some grand building with flags, and figured it might be an inn or something right on the point and I wanted to walk up there to see if I could actually walk along the ocean. And sure enough – there it was! The homes along that part of the road were huge and spectacular and it was all so pretty we still kept walking. Just as I was getting ready to turn around, I saw an entrance to something – didn’t know what, but no RVs or buses were allowed, and I wanted to see what it was. I came upon the most beautiful open-air Chapel-by-the-Sea. So unexpected and so very peaceful it almost brought tears to my eyes. There was ocean on both sides and only a few people were around, and then they left, so I just sat down for a while and let the serenity soak in. It was a cloudy day, and the sun was trying to peek through, but it didn’t really look like the sun – it looked more like a peephole from above, and I had the feeling that my loved ones ‘up there’ were watching over me on my journey. The whole experience was very moving and very spiritual. Other people started coming in and someone asked me if I was from the area, and was this the Bush residence. I didn’t know, but I actually think it was. I started looking at some of the name plaques (either in memory of, or thanksgiving for) on the benches, and there were a lot of Bushes and Walkers. I hadn’t really noticed the large house or the little stone church that was way off to the side of the chapel-by-the-sea yet, and the house just had a couple of sawhorses by the driveway saying ‘private’ but the stone church was open to visitors. The church was built entirely by sea-washed stones and boulders and it too was very pretty both inside and out. I just had to make another donation – there was a discreet box inside the church and it had been such an unexpectedly beautiful afternoon that I wrote a little note thanking whoever for letting the public visit the chapel-by-the-sea and the little church.

The walk back to town was pretty and there were a lot of senior citizens sitting on benches enjoying ice cream cones in town (waiting for their bus I think), and most of them talked to or petted Tula on our way past – she was being friendly but I think she was really hoping for ice cream! We covered 3 1/2 miles, and passed the best scarecrows I’ve seen – dressed up as lumberjacks sawing down a huge tree.

It was getting to be evening and I continued to drive a little further north along the coast. I went through the town of Old Orchard, and like York, it had a somewhat abandoned air – empty shops; a little amusement park quiet by the beach (I could almost hear the echo of laughter); and dozens of motels with “vacant” lights on and no one there. I didn’t even want to stop at any of them because it would be kind of creepy to feel like I was the only one in town (there were a few people about, but it was so quiet). Luckily I came upon a big campground that had people around, and picked out a good site, and finished the mile or so of walking, and called it a day. A very special day.

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  1. I gave our local newspaper some information about you and your expedition. Last week there was an article about Angels among Us and I thought of you. Keep up the good work. Jan of St Pauls Redwood Food Pantry. NY

    On September 15th, 2012, I received a call from Nancy Zybert, who said she was on a “Give Back To America” journey.Ms

    Zybert was looking for a food pantry to donate to and an Alexandria Bay Chamber of Commerce worker told her of the

    local pantries. She called , did some shopping, and arrived with her traveling companion, Tula, her chocolate lab. She told

    mw a little about herself and left me a business card.

    On her 56th birthday (she was born in 1956 ) she left her home on a 56 week road trip to all 56 states and US Territories.

    Ms Zybert donates $56 every day to a worthy cause and walks 8 miles a day, 7 days a week. She calls her venture

    “Expedition 56”.

    Ms Zybert has a website, If you want to tour the United States with Ms Zybert click onto this

    website. It is possible to have daily email sent to your inbox. Nancy Zybert takes breathtaking pictures and has a

    journal of her experiences along the way.

    Janice M Atkinson, coordinator, St Pauls Redwood Food Pantry

    • Thank you for the kind and encouraging comments! (and I was able to remove the double post – no problem!)

  2. Sorry about the double post. Maybe you can remove one.

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