Acadia Postcard

Watch clouds crouch over grey rock islands, Maine Coast Atlantic chill spray bow and paddle blade rainbows, miniatures of the ones above until the orange overwhelms them like us. Out of the boats, change for dinner, candlelight shine off the inside of the windowpane signals full night darkness, change again to ride back to the campground along a circuitous carriage road route. Hours on these paths — aesthetic radius curves, granite fin edge guard rail “coping stones”, stone arch bridges, along ponds or lakes or streams or over never too high hills — easy to read the intentional conviction to hark back to the beginning of the 20th century, to give a taste to the grinning daylight crowds who pedal here maybe realizing for the first time that all bicycles, not just knobby tired ones, are perfectly handy on dirt, that’s where they started. Swallow the smug frown that these are roads to nowhere, they are roads just for the delight of being on roads before they were asphalt and lined with meaningless assurances. They’re lovely.

Mist made viscous by quiet, we are the only ones out here tonight, tires planing the granular surface shushing the noise of thoughts, eyes dart back in and drift out of trapezoids of LED light in front.  Moss fern conifers moose shit, that must be what we are breathing but the subliminal recollection of ocean crash proximity makes for a salty olfactory illusion.

Acadia, one of my favorites, the first national park east of the Mississippi, 1919, bring a bicycle.