Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Maine Deaf Timberfest 2005

Ohh where do I begin? It was a real nice trip and we wished we'd gone for a week instead of 4 nights. My body and brain staged a protest by making me a total zombie this week - not enough rejuventation. I m hoping to be out of town for Labor weekend but we shall see.

Jen, Carm, and I rented a shiny tomato red car and drove up to Southern Maine leaving early Wednesday afternoon. The trip went by pretty quickly with 3 drivers taking turns, chatting, and some reading. In late evening, we met Regan at Denny's parking lot in Auburn, near Portland. Few deafies were there at her apartment to meet us for a cook out. One of the deafies was an old RIT buddy of Carm's so they had a happy reunion. We spent the evening chatting and munching on burgers and Regan's yummy potato salad. I spent the majority of the evening dozing on the couch as I had gone to work and spent all morning in a meeting.

In late morning, we set off to Portland to sample some of its seafood cuisine, at a restuarant converted from a ship. I had the pasta special with shrimp (they really heaped piles of shrimp onto the pasta so I let someone polish it off for me) and Jen and Carm had cod sandwiches. We also shared a strawberry shortcake (yummy) and we capped the lunch with a visit to the top of the ship with views of the pier, docked sailboats, speedboat and luxury condos.

We went to EMS to stock up on few things then on to Orchard Beach (think Ocean City in MD). It's pretty kitchsy with the stores and arcades. Nonetheless we had a good time exploring the boardwalk and the beach. The water was cold yet refreshing. Played some air hockey and walked the beach a bit. I sampled some peanut butter and chocolate fudge as well a maple flavored salt water taffy. *urp* I've had plenty of dessert in Maine including this week and I've finally reached my limit. No more sugary dessert for a while...

In late afternoon, we left for Biddeford, a campground where the Timberfest is being held while there was enough daylight to set up camp. Registration went smoothly and we shared the site with Regan and others we met the previous evening. We set up camp, chatted, and cooked some dinner. We topped it off by roasting marshmallows for S'mores or simply ate it out of the bag. The campground was a great thing to behold. The lovely Saco River flows around the end of campground and I've been told that it empties into the Atlantic Ocean.

Being it the time of the month, my body was very tender thus reducing my sleeping comforts. I interrupted Jen and Carm's sleeping with my constant turning. The next day, I gave in and went to Wal-mart to get a sleeping pad. My sleeping became progressively better at my and others cost...

After a delicious breakfast of blueberry pancakes, we signed up for some activities that would take place in the 2 days. I went for horseshoe throw and skillet tossing. Carm signed up for Cross B wood cutting and Jen for darts. Carm and I had some free time so we rented a canoe and went paddling up and down the Saco river. The weather was lovely and we wished it could be longer than one hour (rental limit). We basked in the glow and smells of Nature, thick trees lined the river and we passed an occasional house or two. We stopped briefly at a small protruding rock in the middle of the river and took few daring picture shots that involved one getting out of the canoe to pose and no natural anchor in place, we took very quick shots and grabbing the canoe. We found a small creek that diverted from the river and took a look - only if we had more time.... *an Anne Shirley sigh* We were in depths of despair for a bit..

After a hasty lunch, I partaked in horseshoe toss but alas my competitor was nowhere to be found. After getting her name, I tracked her down to Darts (she doubled booked). She joined me shortly - she lost out at Darts. Horseshoe throw was very pathetic for me. After few good starts, I began - and became stuck in that mode - throwing horseshoes wildly but did not injure anyone.. I was never able to coordinate my throws and Vicki, being a trained athlete was able to get into the grove and out scored me. I was a gracious loser only happy to see the event end. We wandered around a bit, taking in the scene, chatting with an occasional person.. We made a food run at Shaw's - a grocery store 5 minutes drive from the campground. Conrad cooked his chickens on an iron board over the camp fire and Jenny wrapped up 10 corns in aluminum foil and tossed them into the camp fire to roast. It was a bit tricky extracting each corn out of burning wood but we were crafty and managed to get all the corn out without risking burns. Jen then put mayo and chili pepper and parm cheese onto the corn and polished it off with a lime wedge. Very, very tasty. Roasted Corn a la Jenny.

We had another campfire and more s'mores. We played a couple of 'getting to know you' games. I was worn out and hit the sack early - Jen and Regan became acquainted our neighbors and passed the evening with them.

Morning - French toast and bacon with orange juice. Yummy. Feeling energized, I went to the skillet tossing site anticipating some good ol' fun and outlet. Turned out that during a Children's Timberfest the previous, a kid running through the obstacle course tripped over something intended for the Skillet toss, and broke his ankle. The competition was changed to log throw. But we weren't allowed to practice, putting several of us (OK - me!) at a disadvantage. Only three throws. That's it. I let out three feeble throws, wary throws out of concern of looking silly - two swinging upwards and the last try throwing as I would a shot put. Something like that. I probably threw the shortest distance - 11 feet. Some (bigger) women achieved 20 feet and more. I ll have to get bigger, gain 20 pounds of fat and muscle and I should be able to kick ass the next time around.

Carmen's event took place after mine. I admit I was incredulous when she told me she signed up for an event that involved motor saws and cutting - I m not as adventurous as I thought I would be. I looked on enviously as she donned protective gear and cut two wood blocks with ease. Cough*beginnersluck*cough Next time.. next time.. We remained at the sight watching men's competition in log rolling, sawing pieces of wood for best time and speed. We urbane New Yorkers found ourselves cheering them on.

Timberfest Committee wrapped up the two day event with Mark Morales' perfomance - I only knew him by sight and reputation around Gallaudet over the years. I'd only seen him in a dance troupe, but it's a first to see him act. He did a stand up routine and cleverly included local people and region into jokes and stories. Two stories come to mind - the two handed ABC/1-20/20-1/Z-A story about Cortez and King Mocuzema; and a joke involving Saddam in a bar during DPHH in Maine using mainly International Sign. Saddam "happened" to know the signs. Cute story anyhow. Although it was a nice show, but he ended it rather sappily with DREAM in all ABCs and ended it with God Bless. Some people winced, politely ignored that and applauded for an overall excellent performance.

We returned to our camp site and hung out a bit before heading over to our neighboring site for some camp fire and chatting. Hit the sack around 2am with the goal to be out and cleaning before 8am (we all had to sign out at 10 am so the campground could be ready for a next major event arriving around 1pm). We picked things up, cleaned the damp and dirty tent with best of our abilities avoiding contact with the wet grass as much as possible. By approximately 9 15am we loaded the car, went to Dunkin Donuts to get some lattes and hit the road back to NYC. It was an uneventful ride aside from some missed exits or wrong turns (damn construction and detours), stopped at Friendly's north of Hartford and returned to the city before 6pm.

It was one of the best nature fixes I've had in quite a while and it was too short! Again, "next time.."

7 Comments:

Anonymous Christine said...

Sounds like you ate a lot of yummy foods!! Wish I could be there since you had so much fun!

8/28/2005 5:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Man, why can't u stay there a bit longer? ;o)

~CMK

8/29/2005 3:23 PM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Great writeup, Katie! Now I have an intense craving for S'mores.

8/29/2005 6:07 PM  
Blogger Wildstarryskies said...

sounds like you had fun!!!

xoxo

8/29/2005 6:43 PM  
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Blogger Diana said...

BlueBerry Pancakes
Prep time: about 20 minutes

Ingredients:

3/4 c. flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. margarine
1 egg
3/4 c. milk
1/2 c. blueberries, washed and drained
extra margarine for the pan
Utensils:

stove (You'll need help from your adult assistant.)
large bowl
mixing spoon
saucepan
medium-size bowl
whisk
measuring cups and spoons
spatula
Directions:

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Set the bowl aside.
Melt the margarine in a small saucepan.
Crack the egg into a medium-size bowl, then add the milk and melted margarine.
Whisk until everything is well mixed.
Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture. sportsbook
Whisk again until both mixtures are blended together.
Put extra margarine in the saucepan and heat it on the stovetop on medium heat. It is hot enough when the margarine starts to bubble.
Use a measuring cup or a small ladle to spoon the batter into the pan. Put some blueberries on top of each pancake.
Cook your pancakes on medium heat until small bubbles appear on the top.
Use a spatula to see when your pancakes are light brown on the bottom. When they are, flip them over with the spatula.
Cook for another few minutes until the pancakes are light brown on the other side.
Remove your pancakes and put them on plates to enjoy!
Serves: 2

Serving size: 3 or 4 medium pancakes

Nutritional analysis (per serving):

333 calories
11 g protein
9 g fat
52 g carbohydrate
3 g fiber
108 mg cholesterol
915 mg sodium
270 mg calcium
2.8 mg iron

Note: Nutritional analysis may vary depending on ingredient brands used.

Suggestion:

Eat your pancakes with powdered sugar, cinnamon, maple syrup, jelly, or fruit on top.
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11/12/2007 4:49 PM  
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