sabbatical reflections: setting the scene

so my sabbatical was on the coast of maine at a place the current stewards call dickinson’s reach. it is originally passamaquoddy land and the arc towards access and stewardship that includes them has begun. there are two primary ways to get to it. one is to park at a small lot and walk a 1.5 mile trail in. the other is to take a canoe or small boat from a little launch called duck cove. it is the most remote place i ever had done an extended stay.

DR (what the current stewards call it for short) is was the 50-year homestead of bill copperthwaite (more details on bill and his life over here). there are a total of 8 yurts, 2 of which are more permanent living spaces (including a wood stove for heating and cooking in each). the others include outyurts, food storage, a kitchen, and a study. let it be known that even though it was a relatively remote location, i was definitely not roughing it.

i was there for 4 weeks and the only person staying at DR for week 1, 2 and 4. my partner came for week 3 (which was magical. more on that in a later writing). there is another residence across the way where a mentor and his partner have a yurt, similar to the biggest yurt at bill’s. he was staying there week 1 and 4 and we saw each other for dinner on most of the nights he was there. there were sometimes other folks with him on his side, too. and that first week, two other folks were with him consistently, one who is a friend of mine and another who is a chef (they were putting on a conference of sorts). i went over and dinner every night the chef cooked. it was awesome to have that connection and community and yummy food that i just had to clean up for. and it meant that i had to do a lot less cooking for myself. which was rad overall and i would do it the same way if given the chance again. that said, i have some small feelings of loss about the ways i didn’t find my own solo dinner flow.

anyway, peter helped me move in and move out by using his small boat to carry a big plastic bin or two of my stuff when i arrived and departed. everything else i (or me and david) carried on my/our back(s) into and out of the place on the trail. including food, sleeping supplies, books, etc etc.

definitely the most rugged set up i’ve ever lived in and, still given that, it was a pretty sweet situation in which to be solo-ish in the woods for a month.

photos from my time

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