Friday, November 28, 2008

Ode to the Isaac H. Evans

We had a couple join us this summer that had sailed on the Evans in 1973! Lois and Brown of Bedford, MA, came back thirty five years later and brought some friends with them. They also brought a folder full of all their correspondence with Doug and Linda (who owned and operated the Evans in the 70s) and news articles that they had collected about the boat over the years. The letters were typewritten and the pages brittle and yellowed. I felt like I was getting a fly-on-the-wall view back in time.

What I also received was another affirmation that the Evans has touched many lives in many ways. Some people come aboard for a trip and we never see them again but, more often than not, we see guests over and over and over...and not always on board. For example, Rich and MaryBeth sailed with us years ago and now have a young son. He's only two so he's not old enough for a sailing adventure yet but they stop by every summer just to say hi on their way to explore other Maine venues. There are always cards and letters and packages reminding us that people think of us and their trip long after they have joined us. People send books for the ship's library, poems that they wrote, drawing and paintings that they created, and lots and lots of photos. It's easily one of my favorite parts of being the temporary steward of the Evans. She changes people's lives.

In the folder that Lois and Brown brought with them, I discovered a poem that Lois had written on September 30, 1973, and Lois graciously let me copy it:

All aboard the Isaac Evans
Schooner life's the life for me - -
Sun and sailing, wind and water,
The weather, fun and friends are free.

Eat your chowder in the sunshine
Count the lobster toggles, too;
After dark, start counting star-tracks,
And trace the moon, if it's on view.

Learn the tricks of schooner travel:
Save on power, hoard the drink.
Eat a lot of Linda's cooking
Buoyancy won't let you sink!

In the "head", develop muscles,
Pump the necessary strokes,
In the battle of the sexes
Different strokes for different folks!

Huddle by the stove's pot belly
Hear Doug's tales of Maine and men,
Plan right now to come next summer,
Schooner-sailing once again.

-For Linda and Doug Lee

And not long after their trip we received a letter in the mail with another lovely poem:

Sailing, eating, talking - - heavens!
We must be on the Isaac Evans.
Leaving Rockland, hoisting sail,
Seeing other boats to hail.
Spotting island, seals, and shore,
Drinking coffee, juice, and more,
Adding sunscreen over lotion,
Makes us know we're on the ocean.
As evening sunset fades to dark,
Mosquitoes group to find their mark.
As stars come out and lamps are lit,
The fog comes creeping, bit by bit,
And passengers may go to bed
After paying visits to the head.
Some go to sleep as bod meets bunk,
While others dream of ships long sunk,
Of pirates' treasure, Evans' ghost,
Of early traffic on the this coast,
Of times when schooners ruled the sea.
And had no passengers like me.

Russ Island hosts our lobster feast:
The most good eatin' in the East.
Some test the waters with a swim,
Some solve puzzles NOT for the dim,
Some doze on deck with books on tummies,
Some brave the chill while wrapped like mummies.
The younger set climb masts, do chores,
While older folks dodge swinging doors.
On one pursuit we all agree:
It's fun to spend four days at sea!

Thanks, Lois!

1 comment:

Dana said...

Thanks for sharing Brenda. It proves once again that the "Evans" experience is a living, breathing organism.