Experiencing Monhegan for the first time (again)

Experiencing Monhegan

As with all of this site, Experiencing Monhegan is also experimental.  If sufficient numbers use it… it stays (or getting improved).  If not, we’ll try something else.

So here’s the deal.  What did you feel when you first came in contact with the Island? Please, no full length novels.  About 500 words, maybe.  By way of example, I submit my first impression.

The first time I  saw Monhegan

The year was 1958, the day super dark  gray, but no rain in sight.   Stepping off the Balmy Days onto the slip, I thought I was entering Plato’s cave.  The residents of the cave, in my imagination, where themselves from a long line of cave dwellers who had grown accustomed to the dark which had become their reality.  Beat-up pickups, three accessible phones (coin fed), no community electrical power, no news papers, TV was out of the question, no public water for most of the year, no central heating, no medical facilities, if you did not have your own lobster boat (and lobstering was only possible after a three year residency), you could access the mainland only three times a week (and that would require at least a two night motel bill) etc….oh yes, that was some reality Monhegan offered to potential residents….locals had nothing to fear. These cave dwellers would fight to the death rather than be dragged out of their reality…down the slip… into the promise of light that the Balmy Days offered…my reality.   I could not imagine anyone of their own volition choosing to live on Monhegan.  I could not get back on the Balmy fast enough.

Then, I had it all….male, white, tall enough, great education, (relatively) wealthy, just nothing but choice ahead of me.  It would take less than a decade for my reality to run out of options and decompose.  On the late boat,  Labor Day, 1967, Raquel (RickI), our three children (the youngest then in diapers), our dog, a collection of gerbils and eight truck loads of our stuff passed over that slip into a new reality of sunlight, free of the politics of the day, free from the pressures of working for a corporation, free from mindless consumerism, joyfully dumping the twentieth century for the simplicity and life affirming nineteenth century.

Carl Wincapaw was doing the trucking then. After the first load up to our new home, the Cundy Cottage,  Carl informed me that he had a party to attend but that I could use his truck to complete the move.  Close to forty years later, we move off the Island but sadly, no Carl.


So, this is what I have in mind.  And your first impressions of the Island? I confess that writing about this is like seeing the Island again… for the first time.  I’d love to see your Monhegan….. Just register as an contributor , and post your impression (about 500 words) and include a photo it desired.  Or, send both to me via email with “Experiencing Monhegan” is the subject line.

Let’s see if this works and is fun.    Peter