The Journey to Ukazoo’ Book project on Kickstarter-“Broken Penny Farthing”

‘The Journey to Ukazoo’, a Kickstarter ArtStory project. Please visit my Kickstarter page and support the publication of this unique ArtStory project.

Included in The Journey to Ukazoo’ book are the 37 stories and images. Each story has its own unique whimsical flavor set to the image and location visited. The image shown is used for story ‘Slide 32’, ‘Broken Penny Farthing’ and the location of the story is Bar Harbor/Arcadia National Park, Maine.

Kickstarter Link: Craig L Haupt

 

My thanks to some of the supporters of this book: Robin T, Steve G, and Judy M.

Image: ‘Broken Penny Farthing’
Copyright: Craig L Haupt
Ukazoo: A Trademark of Ukazoo Bookstore and used with permission.

 

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Journey to Ukazoo-Slide 34

Canoe Ride

Journey to Ukazoo

Slide 34-”Canoe Ride”

Stopping in South Berwick, for the fourth of my four stops in Maine, I checked into the Academy Street Inn. Eyeing a sign-up Brochure in the parlor I penciled in my name for a three-day, middle of the week, camp-out/canoe excursion at a nearby lake, along with several other guests.

To compact the amount of vehicles used for the trip, I shared a ride with a couple and their two children, Ross and Ava. During the in-route conversation, I was informed that besides enjoying a camping adventure with the kids, they were also revisiting the place they first met 14 years ago. Ross, their son, was especially excited because he wanted to use his newly acquired rod & reel, originally owned by his great-grandfather, now handed down to him from his dad.

At the lake, I set up my tent near their site and we did a buddy thing with meals and chores.

Posted on several trees around the camp sites were the recreational do’s and don’ts. All the usual, lifejackets, no alcohol, etc. but down at the bottom in large bold letters:

WARNING!!

Lake is Home to

“Big Moe”

Very Large, Dangerous, Elusive Fish

Extremely Fond of Cheeseburgers

Do Not keep any in your boat

After, ironically, having cheeseburgers for lunch, I overheard Ross and his sister jokingly plotting to take a leftover cheeseburger on the canoe ride to try and catch “Big Moe”. Once cleanup was completed and the group prepared to take the canoes out, Dad took a well worn ukulele he had used to serenade Mom during their first date. Out on the lake, their canoe leisurely drifting, Dad was now lost in his singing, and Ross, with a surprised Ava peering over his shoulder, hooked up his fishing line with a cheeseburger he had secretly pocketed and cast it into the water.

Glancing over from my canoe, I saw Ross’s fishing line tug.

I quickly grabbed the camera and took this picture as the line pulled taut and up came “Big Moe”.

With Ross, struggling to hang on to the rod, Ava turned around and franticly started yelling to get dad and mom’s attention. The bow of the canoe started to tip up and out of the water as “Big Moe” kept pulling down on the line trying to free himself. Not wanting to lose his prized father-to-son fishing rod, Ross resisted his mom and dad’s pleas to release the rod & reel. As everyone started to slide down in a ‘Titanic’ moment, and the curved rocker at the stern inched below the water’s surface, Ross had no choice, he let the rod go. In that instant, “Big Moe” and the fishing rod disappeared beneath the surface and the canoe, tension released, arched forward and down, slapping the lakes surface with a jolt. Shaken and wet from the spray of water, miraculously, everyone remained in the canoe.

That evening, with the rest of the group turned in for the night, I heard two distinct noises while sitting on the pier watching the stars.

The first noise was Ross wandering out to the pier. Sad about losing his rod & reel, he couldn’t sleep. While we recounted the day’s adventure, the second noise occurred. In the water, a splashing sound. Directly in front of us, with hook, rod, and reel still attached, was “Big Moe”.

Big sorrowful eyes begged us to take the hook out. Having the longer reach, I carefully removed the hook. At the same time, Ross used a nearby pole to bring the rod close enough to the pier for him to retrieve. With that accomplished, “Big Moe” lowered himself slightly into the water and back up again to suggest a thank you. Then he remained, patiently waiting. It was Ross that figured it out.

Quickly running back to the campsite, he quietly got two leftover cheeseburgers from the cooler and returning, did a gentle toss of each to a very appreciative “Big Moe”.

Another thank-you dip and submerging, out of sight, “Big Moe” swam away.

Art notes:

All images and text are copyright Craig L Haupt

Postings of “Journey to Ukazoo” Slides are every Monday Evening.

New arrivals to the “Journey” please see Slide One for a brief synopsis.

Opening Art Reception, Saturday, March 15th, 2014, 5:00 to 8:00 P.M., at Ukazoo Book Store, Towson, MD

Journey to Ukazoo-Slide 33

For You My Love, Flowers

Journey to Ukazoo

Slide 33-”For You My Love, Flowers”

 

THE INN:

Third stop in Maine. Checked into the Mill Pond Inn in Damariscotta Mills and as with past visits, I was glad to see hosts, Brandy and Billy.

THE FAMILY:

Arriving later in the day, with all the needed earmarked tour books, brochures, lists of family and friends recommendations, and recreational gear, both in and atop their van, was a family of five. The parents, Jack and Myrna, able to coordinate time off from their busy work schedules, were aglow with anticipation of a week spent entirely with their three daughters.

THE GIRLS:

Ages 8 to 12, the girls, wasting no time jumping out of the van, were a bundle of excitement raring to have the time of their lives. All three over talking each other to let us know their plans for the week-Playing, fishing, swimming, playing, boating, sightseeing, playing, biking, and eating lots of lobster. I asked if they mentioned playing.

Jack and Myrna, after checking in, as elated as the girls, started right in with the first suggested activity, a canoe ride. During the week, mom and dad were in constant motion, keeping pace with the girls, and if not directly involved, then sitting nearby to watch. The girls loved it all.

THE MOM:

For Myrna, getting a chance to spend extended time with the girls was heaven, as evenings and weekends back home only afforded short trips. These, intermingled with catching up on everyday chores and getting ready for the start of the next work/school week.

By the fifth day of keeping up with the wants and needs of three very active girls, mom, happily occupied as she was, started to display some wear.

THE DAD:

Jack, as enthusiastic of spending time with the family as Myrna, started out the week fully engaged but with each passing day, Jack inadvertently took up some guy stuff offers. A little golfing, an evening card game with Billy and me, he hadn’t noticed that Myrna never managed a break from the weeks activities with the girls.

It was day five, as Jack, Billy and I wandered in from an early evening fishing jaunt, that Jack spied Myrna sitting in the dining area, chin cupped in hands, looking worn-out after a full day with the girls.

THE FLOWERS:

Becoming acuity aware of his unintentional breaks, Jack motioned Brandy, Billy, and me into the other room. With hushed voice, asked if we would keep Myrna occupied and redirected, if any questions arose, while he took a short trip to town. Jack also asked if we would do a little Babysitting that evening. We could do both.

Hearing the van door close as Jack returned, Myrna, a touch concerned by his latest absence, slowly rose from her seat to greet his return. Jack stepped into the room with flowers in hand.

I took this picture as he gave Myrna a soft caress with the other hand and said, “For you my love, Flowers”. He proceeded to ask if she would go out on a date with him.

Myrna turned in our direction and she was informed that all was prearranged, reservations made, and we would entertain the girls.

A soft smile, a tear, a returned hug and a wait of just 20 minutes to freshen up was her response.

THE NEXT DAY:

Dad took the girls boating on Damariscotta Lake one last time before next morning’s departure, while Myrna relaxed on the back deck with Brandy and a few other guests.

THE NEXT, NEXT DAY:

Van packed, Jack at the steering wheel, and the girls waving goodbyes, Myrna laid the flowers in her lap as they made ready to head home. It was a good week, she said, a very good week.

 

Art notes:

All images and text are copyright Craig L Haupt

Postings of “Journey to Ukazoo” Slides are every Monday Evening.

New arrivals to the “Journey” please see Slide One for a brief synopsis.

Opening Art Reception, Saturday, March 15th, 2014, 5:00 to 8:00 P.M., at Ukazoo Book Store, Towson, MD

 

Journey to Ukazoo-Slide 32

Broken Penny Farthing

Journey to Ukazoo

Slide 32-”Broken Penny Farthing”

 

Continuing with my second stop of four in Maine, I checked into the Hearthside Bed & Breakfast in the town of Bar Harbor on Mt. Desert Island. Besides working on a couple of small drawings, I plan on doing some biking at the adjoining Acadia National Park.

Within the park’s borders lies “The Carriage Roads”, a network of 51 miles of crushed stone roads divided into 12 interconnecting “Loops”. Catering to walking, biking, horseback riding, and horse drawn carriages, no motor vehicles are allowed on the roads.

As I was unloading my bike, two separate groups of bicyclists arrived and parked on each side of the street. One group, also checking into Hearthside Inn, began unloading their bikes, 11 restored late 19th century Penny Farthings. All the bikes sported 50 to 56 inch diameter front wheels and modified with brakes on the smaller rear wheels. Eugene, the unofficial leader, related, with most of the members, by profession, connected to law enforcement, we call ourselves “The Copper Pennies”.

The second small caravan of similar vehicles arrived at the B&B Inn across the street with numerous “regular” gear-driven Ten-speed bikes perched on racks. Appropriately, by decals on  bumpers and windshields, they proclaimed themselves “The Gearheads”

I milled the perimeter as both groups converged, checking each others bikes. As compliments mixed with technical talk, biking stories, and touring the Carriage Roads, the friendly banter initiated a lighthearted wager in the form of a race.

Taking into account the pro’s and con’s of both styles of bikes, a handicap was agreed to. Looking over the map, the Gearheads, led by James, agreed to bike Loop 12 (11.1 Miles) and the connecting Loop 4 (8.6 Miles) would be biked by Eugene and the Copper Pennies. The start/finish would be the Deer Brook stone bridge, located on the connecting section, and in case the finish was close they would enlist a neutral party to declare the winner.

With that, both groups turned in my direction. I agreed.

The following day at the Carriage Roads, on a brisk sun-filled morning, both groups gathered, with the “Gears” facing North and the “Coppers” facing South at the North end of the Bridge. With my shout, they began.

An hour an a half later, it was the whoops and laughter of Eugene and James, out in front, approaching from opposite directions, that brought me to attention and I readied the camera to record the finish. Realizing it would indeed be a close finish, they shouted encouragement and urgings to those close behind, and picking up speed, bore down for the finish at the South end of the bridge.

Now, maybe, if the rabbit that scampered up onto the road’s edge across from me, had waited 30 seconds before deciding this side of the road was the “greener pasture”, harmony and a good natured resolution among bikers may have ruled the day.

My warning was, for the most part, useless, as were their brakes at the suddenness of the potential circumstances. Both Eugene and James, seeing the rabbit dart directly in front of their merging paths, veered, mistakenly into each other, with two other bikers close behind.

At five feet above the ground, an abrupt stop, launching the rider forward head first, called a “Header” is the most dangerous aspect of riding a Penny Farthing.

Taking this picture at impact, Eugene, instinctively, took his feet off the pedals, leaned back, and brought his legs and feet up over the handle bars, so he was pitched off the bike feet-first rather than head-first. An old written solution he had never had the occasion to use until today.

When the dust cleared, without a doubt, the most amazing thing was the lack of serious injury and of damage to the bikes other than Eugene’s Penny Farthing’s front wheel separating from the frame.

A safe unaware rabbit, several band-aids, needed replacement parts back at the Parking lot, an assurance that everyone received a photo of the crash, and an agreed upon “Tie” put everyone back in fine spirits.

 

Art notes:

All images and text are copyright Craig L Haupt

Postings of “Journey to Ukazoo” Slides are every Monday Evening.

New arrivals to the “Journey” please see Slide One for a brief synopsis.

Opening Art Reception, Saturday, March 15th, 2014, 5:00 to 8:00 P.M., at Ukazoo Book Store, Towson, MD