Peter Ralston

Peak of the Eclipse Rockport Harbor

Peak of the Eclipse Rockport Harbor

On Monday we enjoyed the eclipse from an overlook above the harbor. Here we only experienced about 90% occlusion, but it was a gloriously warm and cloudless day. More than anything, the few peak umbral moments yet again reminded me how infinitesimal we truly are. Nature, as ever, is the greatest teacher of all…when we slow down and open ourselves to her. On a far less reflective note, we are girding ourselves for the coming season and are already feeling a bit overwhelmed even as we count our blessings given the myriad projects and opportunities right off our bow. I want to hit pause, though, for a moment to offer you – our extended family – heartfelt thanks…gratitude and appreciation that could not derive from any deeper in my me.

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Images from Maine #180 || Peter Ralston

Images from Maine #180 || Peter Ralston

Slowly, slowly we trend into spring and thank our lucky stars for that. Here’s another little selection for you… of Maine, from Maine.

It’s eerily quiet along the coast now. Hereabouts we’re taking the present historic challenges extremely seriously but we know that this too shall pass and our streets and harbors will once again bustle when the current storm clears. How we look forward to seeing you back here then!

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Images from Maine #179 – March || Peter Ralston

Images from Maine #179 – March || Peter Ralston

First, my apologies for missing two weeks of these “hugs from Maine.” I was away traveling and I must admit that it was great to thaw out a bit.

As ever, the very best part of going away was coming home…to Maine. Having said that, it’s March which means wildly varying temps and weather conditions. We all know that this is the eve of our Mud Season, the one time of year here for which I cannot think of a single person who has much of an appetite.

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Images From Maine #178 || Peter Ralston

Images From Maine #178 || Peter Ralston

Lest you think that winter here doesn’t also have its gentler, more soul-nurturing side, I am sharing with you a “hug” I sent last year at this time. I hope that you enjoy it…again.

Much as I love winter here and usually go out of way to avoid leaving Maine, today I am again taking off for parts south for a week…and may possibly forgo my note to you next Sunday. In any event, all of us here wish you and yours all the best as well.

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Images from Maine || Peter Ralston

Images from Maine || Peter Ralston

You may recall from my last “hug from Maine” that back in mid-January the coast of Maine was ravaged by two historically destructive storms and astronomical high tides. Damage assessment has painted a grim portrait of the consequences of the back-to-back events and it’s not a pretty picture. Millions upon millions of dollars in damages are going to have an intensely negative impact here, especially upon our working waterfronts in the fishing villages along the coast and out on the islands as they begin to gear up for our community-sustaining fishing season.

To that end, today I would humbly like to share with you a link to the Island Institute’s efforts to help those businesses and communities that give the coast its legendary and unique character. Put bluntly, an operative working waterfront is what keeps these towns going and these terribly impactive storms have imperiled the very life’s blood of our coastal communities. 

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A Warm and Cozy Winter Break || Images From Maine by Peter Ralston

A Warm and Cozy Winter Break || Images From Maine by Peter Ralston

While everybody else is hoping for plenty of snow for skiing, or, perhaps, sturdy ice for inland fishing (etc. etc.) I am going to be indolent in the sun, charging my batteries and pretending to be unaware of all things Maine for ten days.

Having said that, it will be difficult—nay, impossible—for me to forget the battering the coast took from the two big wind/tide events last week. It’s with that in mind that I chose Azimuth at the top of this morning’s letter.

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Rockport storms January 2024 || Peter Ralston

Rockport storms January 2024 || Peter Ralston

On Wednesday we had a serious SE blow that gusted to near 70 here. That wind, combined with high tide shortly before 10AM created a lot of damage along the coast, hitting some of the lower lying harbors hard indeed. More than a few buildings floated away and were beaten to death on the shorelines. Rockport is a relatively elevated harbor but SE is the one wind direction that really can do a number on us here. We were relatively lucky.

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Images from Maine #174 || Peter Ralston

Images from Maine #174 || Peter Ralston

As you are reading this I am either out shoveling, roof-raking and snow-blowing OR (with all that on hold) cruising around in the truck hoping that an image or two might find me. Yep, it snowed all last night and I just plain LOVE days like this…for me they are the winter equivalent of getting out on Raven!

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