The Topside, down the road from Anderson's

In less than a week we'll be leaving Maine. Jennifer, Max and I are headed to New York City for a few days. I'll then drop them off at their individual next stops before a night with my parents in Alexandria. Then - home. Home with Justin. Home with no job. Time to see what's next. I haven't been as good as I should be about keeping you all up to date on the happenings here in this house. The happenings, in fact, have kept me busier than I thought I would be and putting aside time for writing proves difficult. Before you go doing it for me - I'll admit that the things keeping me "busy" like getting ice cream and taking night hikes...those thrilling and painful dips in the ocean and dance parties on the veranda...might seem frivolous. But the mere fact that these events are shaping a magnificent summer adventure mean they carry more weight than they normally would, I think.

Hippie Island

When we got here we had fairly modest goals. Write a screenplay. Eat a lot of lobster. Once we'd spent a few days here in Boothbay, of course, our goals grew and changed. We longed, for instance, to conquer "Hippie Island," which lies, foreboding and mysterious, in the harbor, just off our property. After wisely judging that swimming the frigid expanse (especially after a dead seal washed up on shore) would be idiotic, we decided on a slightly less idiotic plan: Borrow two rowboats from the inn and just head on over. The island's name stems from the story of a hippie who lived in a small shack there and who one day decided to try and traverse the stormy waters to the mainland. He died. We, however, conquered (on a clear, calm day).

We came, we conquered

We came up with the rowboat plan after meeting a bartender at the inn named Angus. Jennifer and I headed over to the pub one afternoon for some martinis and quality time together and Angus immediately began chatting with us. Not only did he tell us about the rowboats and where to find the oars, and that if we just sort of took them nobody would notice, but also told us we might want to crash the upcoming wedding that weekend. He even gave us the itinerary. He really understood us, I think. We love antics, we explained. There have been a range so far. There have been lies, and practical jokes, like when, after returning from a secret swim in the pool after hours, we decided to "really get Max," who opted to stay behind, and turned off all the electricity in the house. This required that Nick and Cory sneak into the garage to get to the breaker switch without setting off the dogs, who bark when, say, a butterfly lands too loudly for their taste on a nearby flower. We carried off the prank successfully, though, if you consider success meaning your friend wants to kill you immediately following the act. But he got over it. We all do. There's not much room for negativity up here in beautiful Maine.


The band has been going strong with their recording, getting ready for the upcoming tour and their weekly gig at McSeagull's. This past Sunday's show was especially nice, since my Dad was in town, as well as Rogue's mom and some of her friends. The result was a serious dance party. And it wasn't just us. The bar was crowded and people were into the music - the covers ("Werewolves of London," and "Just What I Needed" among many others) as well as original Buffalino songs (you can hear some of the new (and old) Buffalino tunes on their MySpace page).

The whole gang got to hang out with my Dad a lot while he was here. Last night we went for a group dinner at a great Italian restaurant in town. Since we were all sitting at a table together it got competitive fairly quickly - we split our group down the middle and each end of the table vowed to order the best appetizers. Really. Can't we just relax for a moment? No. No we can't. Team A verses Team 1, as neither of us wanted to be the underdog. It got serious when Team A sent my Dad, but not the rest of us, some kind of alcohol-infused sorbet. We fought back by sending the entire table an after-dinner Sambuca. The restaurant owner threw those in, plus an extra bottle of wine, for free, and needless to say by the end of the night we were all in a fine mood.

Sophisticated gentlemen

Take 2

This morning we headed downtown for breakfast, taking a few cars. My father suggested the Topside, a great place for breakfast, he said. Vinnie arrived first and called him a few times, trying to find the elusive Topside. "The Topside, Vin, it's right down the street from Anderson's," my father told him over the cell phone, which is always on speakerphone, whether he wants it that way or not, and therefore, he got a few open-mouthed stares from vacationers trying to pick out postcards and window shopping.

When we finally caught up with the rest of the group we saw that what my father had meant was the Ebbtide. It's down the road from Sherman's. Close enough. It's another funny memory in the making. There are so many. And that's what I'm getting at. The few times I've woken up after a late night and felt a little down about my life and where's it's going, or wondered what sort of reasoning justified my taking off for Maine, for a summer adventure, it's only a little while before something funny or wonderful happens and I remember that those moments are reason enough.