Tuesday, June 30, 2009


I went for a hike up Maiden's Cliff today, by myself. Seemed strange to hike by myself--people usually don't. But I didn't feel like running around the point and I needed to do something, to feel alive in my body. So I walked and ran up and down the mountain. I couldn't see anything at the top, the usual sweeping view of Megunticook lake below and Penobscot Bay in the distance were replaced by thick mist and fog. The white cross on the ledge was outlined by the contrasting shades of the white behind it. I usually stay for a while and gaze out, picking the places I recognize from my perch. But today, since I couldn't see anything, I turned around and ran back down, trying to move faster than the mosquitos.

Then tonight I watched Into the Wild, a true story made famous by Jon Krakauer in his book by the same name. A long and magnificent film. So sad...what a story. Very solitary, and fit with my adventure up a mountain by myself today (though slightly, and only slightly, more extreme, I assure you). A quotation I like from Emile Hirsch, who played Christopher Johnson McCandless, when asked if he was a risk taker. He replied, "I think so. I had three scoops of sugar in my coffee this morning."

One more picture I liked from the ferry to Islesboro.

Listening to: "Hard Sun," by Eddie Vedder for the movie Into the Wild.
Favorite line: "She just smiled and laughed at me, and took her rules back again."
I leave you with this: "If we admit that human life can be ruled by reason, then all possibility of life is destroyed." -ItW.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Listening to...

Forgot to write what I'm listening to!

Since I'm a dork...

Vivaldi, the Four Seasons.
Favorite season: Spring, or "La Primavera."


Pictures from the Soggy End of June

Sorry to be away from the blog for a while! I wanted to wait to post again until I had some pictures to show you, and as a result I've been snapping away like crazy. I have pictures from the farmer's market on Saturday morning, a boat trip that I took to Camden and Rockland in my whaler with my cousins, and pictures from the Islesboro ferry terminal at Lincolnville Beach (of which I jumped off of one night in the stupidity of my youth a few years ago...but who am I kidding, I'm still stupid and young). I'm pretty pleased with my results, tell me what you think! Here are my favorites:

Two lobstermen bring in their catch to a man from Young's Lobster Pound, waiting on the pilings above for fresh lobster.

Tubs by the Islesboro ferry terminal at Lincolnville Beach.

Lobstermen's dingies tied up at the Lincolnville Beach.

The stern of the boat Rawfaith, moored in Rockland harbor. Looks like a pirate ship...and is equally as erie.

Rockland Light at the end of the Breakwater. The rock wall is a mile long and extends into the middle of the harbor to block the boats from the worst waves during storms.

Baskets made by our friend Diane (husband Kevin runs the farm); they're at the market every Saturday morning and Wednesday afternoon.

Mr. Smith, of Smith's Smoke House. They make smoked meats and fish, and the best beef jerky I've ever had.

Fresh veggies from After the Fall Farm in Montville, ME.

The owner of Ensemble Farms dishes out pasta made that morning at 5am. Semolina flour makes all the's divine.

So that was my weekend (along with some other adventures that I think I'll keep off the internet). I'm about to kill someone because it's still raining. I've sort of just accepted it now, though. Still getting a tan even though I'm never warm and I'm always damp. Off to take a hot shower and pick out movies for the kids to watch tomorrow, seeing as we went pirate hunting today and were all very cold by the end of our excursion. Though we did take along the Pirates of the Caribbean theme music, which warmed us all up. And we found at least three pirate ships lurking outside of the harbor in the least the kids are pretty convinced of it. But what should they have expected? The "Chance of Piracy" meter WAS set to high...

Friday, June 26, 2009

The First Images

Well the camera came...and it's amazing. I'm having so much fun with it! I took some pictures down at Rockport Marine in the fog on Wednesday evening, and brought it to RBC yesterday to take pictures of the kids for the end of the year slideshow. I'm posting three of my favorites to the blog today...tell me what you think.
The fog is rolling past my windows. I'm going to freak out (more than I have already) if it doesn't get nicer SOON. I'll have more pictures to put up from the weekend, but for now I have to go run and then go off to work for "Fun Friday." The theme is sports and a jersey seems to be in order. Thanks to Andy for so kindly supplying a Tracy McGrady special. Here's hoping for nice weather. Or a flight to the Caribbean; whichever comes first. I'm thinking it might be the latter at the rate we're going...

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

D80 yeaaaaah

THE CAMERA CAME TODAY! Beyond excited. I'll post some pictures once I figure out how...

In other news, the weather still blows. So I spent the day making boats out of duct tape and playing capture the flag with soggy kids. Thrilling.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Vicky Cristina Barcelona

I watched this last night. Definitely one of my favorites. Written and directed by Woody Allen, Vicky Cristina Barcelona is both funny and heartbreaking...a modern Annie Hall but kinder, somehow. The characters search for love, find it, fall out of it, don't have the timing's all so true and real. The joy they get from love is what I came away with; the pain is terrible, but the happiness, romance, and exhilaration is worth all of it. And Allen knows that in real life love stories more often than not don't work out in perfect audience-pleasing endings, yet the memories of what they were carry us through whatever else is next. And always we have that glimmer of hope that someone else will stumble upon us and make us fall maddingly, inconveniently, unreasonably in love with them.

The movie conveys all this while poking fun at itself--there is a male 3rd person voice-over narrator who shares the thoughts of the characters in big words and sweeping metaphors. We therefore understand that the film is both a satire and painfully realistic.

Also, Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem are on fire. Their chemistry is electric, and they are both stunningly beautiful, sexy people. And are together in real life, which makes the movie that much better. Scarlett Johannson comes across as plain and boring when she shares the screen with them.

If you haven't seen this yet, do so immediately. A beautiful film.

Hey There, Put on Your Dancin' Boots and Come Dance With Me....

"...on a cold night he would sit in the big chair in front of the fire, reading by the lamp that stood on the heavy plank table and look up while he was reading to hear the northwestern blowing outside and the crashing of the surf and watch the great, blecahed piece of driftwood burning."

-E. Hemingway, Islands in the Stream

Considering I've been living in a a northwestern for the past week, this quotation from one of my favorite books seems appropriate. I've been reading Tree of Smoke by Denis Johnson which is beautifully written. First new-ish book I've read in a while by someone who actually knows what he's doing (besides my mother's book, but that's for another post). No cliches, and his combinations of words are surprising, yet go together well. Kind of like an apple in a salad with vinegrette...unusual yet natural. I'll post a quote from it when I have it nearby; I'm not about to go downstairs to find it.

I'm sitting in my warm bed writing this, skimming Hemingway, and attempting to tired. Today was good, every kid sailed better than I've ever seen them in previous years, and it's only the second day of this season! So rewarding when they remember things you've taught them. But oh, it was cold. The air wasn't bad, but the wind drove the rain sideways and the damp chill seeps through any clothing, no matter how many layers you wear. Still, I'd take being on the water in a drizzly, gray day in Rockport to being just about anywhere else.

It's so foggy outside that I can't see the lighthouse in this fading evening light...I would love to wake up and see blue sky, but I won't hold my breath. I think I'm just going to fall asleep early to get rid of this cough.

At the suggestion of Julian, author of the blog "Heartless Handshakes" (, check it out, this kid knows what he's talking about), I've been listening to my collection of Frank Sinatra...what a man. Also, since going to the Dave Matthews concert at Fenway a few weeks ago, I've been on a big Dave kick...I know he has a repuation of being the favorite of certain types of people, but I can't help it. I really do enjoy his music.

Listening to (besides Classic Sinatra- His Great Performances): "Through the Backyards," (thank you, Vince!) by Au Revoir Simone from their album Verses of Comfort, Assurance, & Salvation.

Favorite line: "...and the moon swept down to greet us, it was warm and made of flowers into vines that barely reached us..."

Monday, June 22, 2009

A Rainy First Day on the Water...

And so summer 2009 has officially begun for me with the start of the RBC sailing program. I love this job. Even though it was rainy today (despite the pretty picture from last year to the right that I just had to post) we still had a great time--the kids in the morning class, around 8 or 9 years old on average, are absolutely adorable. The older kids whom I know pretty well by now are also great, but that's not surprising. Really quality people come to our program and stick with it; I've taught some of the same kids for five years now, and watching them grow up has been wonderful and sometimes funny (especially when the boys come in with voices two octaves lower than the previous summer), though also sobering when I think about how quickly time has started to go by. When I was little summers were each day on the calendar on which I record what we did seems to be filled up so quickly.

We're missing our instructors Nick, Mike, and Alistair for the first week, so we're a little short staffed. However, some of the kids from the 420 class are helping us out in the morning, which is much appreciated! Today in morning circle when we went around and asked everyone's name and age and sailing experience, one little boy had me struggling to keep a straight face. Direct quote: "My name is Havana because I was conceived in Havana, Cuba, and I'm 8 years old and..." We instructors just looked at each other in amazement and tried our best not to laugh too obviously. I'm thinking little Havana doesn't quite understand the meaning of conceived, but regardless I would have loved to hear the conversation that his parents had with him to relay that information...also, when I said I was 20, the kids jaws dropped, and a few of them gasped. I guess 1989 might as well have been the Mesozoic era as far as they are concerned....

The afternoon was pretty eventful in the JC9 class-- one boat capsized, and we had to bring the others in because it was too gusty. The 420s toughed out some rain and enjoyed a brisk sail, even though the wind was flukey as it was coming from land as opposed to the usual nice Southeast breeze from the mouth of the harbor. I really can't wait until this weather clears up, if it ever does. My spirits are so much higher when there's a little sunshine. Though just being out on the water again does wonders, rain or shine.

It's hard to put into words how much I love that little shack of a boat club, but over the summer I'll try my best. It's the place time forgot; I recently re-did posters that had been hanging for at least ten years before I started sailing only because they were getting too faded to read. It's a gift to be able to keep going back to the place that I learned to do what I love most and have it still look and smell the same as it did when I was eleven (a combination of musky sails and ocean air, mixed with a little WD40 and sunscreen). Hopefully I'll be sailing a lot myself this summer as well as teaching others... better believe that the moment there's a bit of sun I'll be out there after teaching, zipping back and forth across the harbor I know and love so well...
Listening to: "Song to Woody," by Bob Dylan, off his self-titled album.
Favorite line: "Hey, hey, Woody Guthrie, I wrote you a song 'bout a funny old world that's a-comin' along..."

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Maine Media Workshops and RBC Preparations

Living in mid-coast Maine is an artist’s paradise. The rocky coast, the slate-gray or vibrant blue ocean, the mountains that slope down to meet the's makes even those who haven't picked up a marker since fourth grade want to run to the nearest art store (Rockport Blue Print would be my suggestion) and start scribbling. It is no surprise, therefore, that many art institutions have cropped along the water's edge. One noteworthy place is the Maine Media Workshops, previously Rockport College and before that The Maine Photographic Workshops. You can spot the "Blue Dots," as locals used to call the students, wandering around Rockport taking pictures of arguably the most photographed harbor in New England by their long hair, skinny jeans, and artsy appearance that is a far cry from that of the preppy and practical locals.

The Workshops had an open house today at their campus on Camden St. (just up from the police station, town offices, and Rocknak's boatyard) for community outreach. People were encouraged to bring their families and dogs and students as well as professional photographers would take pictures in a studio that would normally run up to $1000. My parents, dog (Rosie) and I trundled down to see our friend, the world renown photographer Joyce Tennyson, who will most definitely be featured on the MCA tour. Several people took beautiful pictures of us that I’m sure my mother can’t wait to frame. My dad is already talking about making a Christmas card out of one. Here they are, pictures of pictures taken with my dinky Fujifilm finepix z5. Can’t wait till that Nikon D80 shows up in the mail…

I also finished up the sweatshirt design for the Rockport Boat Club instructors today…check it out and tell me what you think. The burgee will be on the front left and the circular design blown up to cover the whole back of the sweatshirt. The Piracy level is to tell the kids what the chances are of Blackbeard making an appearance in the bay...stay tuned for more tales of pirate sighting and fighting ;) The first day of sailing starts tomorrow and I would kill for some sun so the kids won’t have to take the swim test in this dreary, cold, rainy weather that we can’t seem to escape from. I’ll have to let you know how that goes. Until tomorrow!

Oh, one last thing. If you want the info of any of the places I've mentioned, just leave a comment and I'll email you with all of it.

Listening to: “Portland, Oregon” by Loretta Lynn (ft. Jack White), from her album Van Lear Rose.
Favorite Line: “Well, Portland, Oregon and sloe gin fizz, if that ain’t love then tell me what is.”

And it begins in 5...4...3...2..

Welcome to where the Wilder things are. My name is Charlotte Wilder, and I am starting this blog to document my adventures over the summer and hopefully beyond. To quote Paul Simon, "I got a Nikon camera, I'd like to take a photograph, so Mama don't take my Kodochrome away." While I am not using Kodochrome, the rest of his sentiment holds true.

I will be taking trips around the Maine mid-coast this summer to visit artists I admire in their studios, and take pictures of them and their work. I am a painter and photographer (as well as a writer), and I believe the best way to improve my own work is to learn from that of those I admire. So hopefully you'll find this interesting and worth reading as we all continue to reach and stretch and make ourselves better version of what we already are.

In addition to the "Maine Coast Artists Tour" (not to be confused with the other MCATs, seeing as though I have no doctoral ambitions) I'll be posting pictures from my life and little vignettes to go along with them. Many, I assume, will be from my job as co-head sailing instructor at a little boat club in mid-coast Maine. I'll also put up what I'm listening to these days, as well as the occasional material post under the heading of "Things I Like."

So here goes...up, up, and away!

Listening to:

Vagabond, by Wolfmother. from their self-titled album.

Favorite line: The chorus, "'Cause I'll tell you everything about living free."