Thursday, September 19, 2019
Alas, we must leave the island two days early as the forecast for the next two days calls for high seas. Which meant for us, prioritizing the things that needed to get done and foregoing some things like mowing the lawn and turning the garden. There was purple kale left, a few pole beans and some fennel. The Wednesday Warriors arrived on Wednesday to help board up the windows we didn’t get to, stabilizing all the gas and changing the oil in the generators, mowers and weed whackers. We started early with a discussion over coffee and fresh blueberry buckle, went to work and broke for lunch.
Since we will not be able to eat all the food we brought out, we served up leftovers to the guys and ate heartily of chicken Marsala, steak and onions and roasted potatoes with blueberry pie chef and master baker Raymond left us in the fridge.
The work crew, along with fifteen visitors, left for the day on Wednesday afternoon.
In the evening we feasted on lobster and crab Ethan and Brook brought us fresh caught, when the Warriors departed. There was enough left for lobster salad to feed the guys the next day on Thursday, when they came back for the final close up.
This involved draining all the water, securing the propane tanks, shutting off the electricity and locking all the buildings, including the house and tower, up for the winter.
Our last day brought sunshine and a clear day with a cloudless sky and calm seas. You’d never know that high seas were forecast; Humberto was causing havoc off the coast and the repercussions were due to hit soon, so we stuck to the plan.
We hauled out twelve contractor bags of trash, nine empty five gallon gas cans, empty water cubes, pantry items and a cooler full of food we didn’t get around to eating including chicken thighs and a turkey pot pie. The last big item to go was the electric range purchased some fifteen to eighteen years ago. In August a gas range was flown in by helicopter. Tom and Chris brought it down on a hand truck down the tram and somehow we got it down the steps, onto the beach. It was the last thing we loaded up on Thursday and into the dingy for transport off the island.
In the mornings we turned on the small generator to run the fridge and in the evening we turned on the big generator down by the Whistle House which allowed us to run everything at the house except for the big heater; another reason for us to close early and not stay open until Columbus Day. It gets cold at night into October! This allowed us to take showers, do dishes and keep the lights on until almost bedtime and cooking on the gas range took the edge off the chill in the kitchen and dining room.
It was a long hard day but with the help of a handful of dedicated individuals, the island was successfully shut down for the season, albeit earlier than usual, and left in good order for those who will arrive in May to open up next year with the new caretakers. Many thanks to President of the Board, Rick Mayo for his dedication and meticulous attention to detail. Chris and Tom also pitched in on Wednesday and Greg Bridgman, whose help every year to both crank up the water in the spring to fill the cistern from the well, and to shut it down and drain it in the fall is invaluable. One day we’ll take a video of all he does so that others can follow in his footsteps. Now the push begins to raise the $150,000 needed to put in solar power in the spring. Please contact Friends of Seguin Island Light Station (FOSILS), if you are able to be part of this new chapter in the history of this historic paradise.