Saturday, March 28, 2009

March 27, 2009

1. We were going to do the river trip, but we didn't do it the year before so all the food and stuff was still sitting in a giant pile in the yard, totally soaking wet from last summer, and the food was all soggy and rotted.

2. I found this rifle packed away in a canvas case, called a "paper gun" that fired drinking straws, but fast enough so they could go in you and penetrate your skin.

3. This young kid showed up in a tux, trying to sell tickets to some benefit, and wouldn't stop yakking about the paper gun and how kool it was, which it was, but I was like, hey man I have to pack up to go on the river and we haven't even started yet and everything is totally soaking wet from last year and everybody's standing around and nobody's even helping.

4. Nearby, just prior to this, I was at this small but protruberating knob of solid granitic rock in Falmouth, Mass. it was a geological landmark in the area, visible from Martha's Vineyard (where I first saw it), with field trips & stuff for geology undergrads, it had basalt dikes. I almost killed a couple people by knocking down big rocks on their head. But on the flatter side of the hill it was a town park, then it went to woods. People played horseshoes but the pits were surrounded by tall nets, so you had to throw the horseshoes almost straight up in the air to get them over the nets. So forget about aiming them. Scott Bolduc was playing.

5. Back at the house (next to the massive pile of wet junk for/from the river trip) A woman who resembled Brenda Day was trying play cassettes but they kept getting eaten by her little tape player, then I noticed they were my cassettes. Lots of odd home recordings.

6. Nobody was really helping with the packing and it was obvious we had 5x more stuff than the canoes could ever handle. One of the canoes had like a 10 foot high stack of wadded up wet sleeping bags, tents & stuff coming out of it. Most of the food was ruined, cuz it had been left out for a year.

7. Then for some reason I decided that before we left to go camping I had to go to this place in the woods where an igloo made of stones had been built by Indians, or so everyone said. I knew of it well and wanted to go and sit inside it and smoke pot. It was not a long distance away from us, which is why I went. I figured I could be back in an hour. However, the whole forest was being clearcut and there were so many new logging roads I could not find the path leading to the stone igloo and the clear-cutting was so severe that I flew into a blind rage.

8. On the second trip to the stone igloo that day I took a white van that got stuck in the snow deep in the woods so I had to walk. At this point some was with me. Now there was a large old partially abandoned factory complex that I kept running into every time I tried to get to the stone igloo. Sometimes there were apartment buildings in the way, built into the sides of sand and clay cliffs. Basically, everything had fences and no trespassing signs. Now someone was with me, I want to say my cousin Todd. We now discovered the entire complex was at the headwaters of a river that flowed very steeply and was all diverted for water power and taken out of its channel, so you could see where the original polished stone ledges and water falls used to be, but they were now dry, or just mossy and trinkling. The place was a mess with barb wire, old falling down buildings and abandoned iron machinery and old dump truck bodies.

9. We popped out to a spot where there was a fairly well built apartment complex on the left, and some small ponds on the right. Behind them was a huge shher 80 foot grey granite bedrock ledge with a giant, tall black iron edifice built into the ledge that looked like three smokestacks. But they weren't smokestacks. They were black test tubes built into the rock like veins. Each of their tops were built into and inside the rock of the ledge. Only after I got a lot closer could I see the whole factory was the stacks from a very old and odd dam turbine. The mountain stream came off the top of the ledge and all of it poured like a pitcher of milk into the black iron test tubes and turned a rusty 2 foot little turbine that spun like a pinwheel near the bottom, and you could see it spinning through a little isinglass window at eye level at the bottom. A guy came out from the building behind the test tubes. I was first afraid of him, but he was friendly and so we talked. I told him we were just trying to get to the Indian igloo and didn't realize it was on the other side of the river. He knew about the stone igloo. I asked him how Joe Emerson was, so apparently I had been to this place before. He knew Joe, so that broke the ice. He said the whole place sort of fell apart a few years ago after FERC would not let them apply for one license for the whole place as a hydro complex, called "Eschaton," and instead made them apply for a license for each little dam, which bankrupted them. He said if FERC had given them one license he was sure they could have fixed the place.

10. We started walking back toward where we thought was the road, because we learned we had to cross the river to get to the stone igloo and it was obvious the water was way too high to cross it anywhere. We kept getting lost in small, odd, clearings, an old rifle range, an old rod & gun club, then we got to a big giant clearing full of old dump truck bodies and metal junk. Lots of guys were there and it was cold, standing around and cutting up metal with torches or just goofing off.

11. The guy from the dam and another guy came by us in a truck and said they'd give us a ride to the road. We then passed a shallow, riffly stream that was tributary to the larger stream. I remember having fished it before, only caught one smallmouth. It flowed directly down the road, or the road flowed down it, so we drove in down it. But it was only 1 foot deep. The old guy said the state was putting alewives in the brook. I said that was great and this stream was probably the farthest upriver that alewives ever travelled up the whole river. And the other guy muttered, "canals," meaning that he believed the local anti-alewife story that alewives never went up this river except after they had built a canal in the lower river at a falls. I dropped the subject because I didn't feel like arguing. We got to where the stream flowed into the larger river, at a bridge over the larger river, which I remembered from a dream before, and it was made of railroad ties, but now the bridge was fallen apart and one side was collapsed into the water. It had been solid before. I got out and tried to walk across the left side of the rails, but it collapsed under my weight and I fell into the river and waded up my the chest to get to the opposite bank. The water was aqua green like the Waits River. Then the truck drove right through the river up to its windows but somehow got through.

12. My friend and I stood soaking wet on the black top road on the opposite bank, which was a state highway, which looked like along the Piscataquis in Guilford, Maine but also looked like Locke Mills. And then we looked at each other, like, how the hell are we supposed to get home? Cuz we still had to pack the canoes for the big river trip. Then one side of giant old wooden building across the street careened over. One whole wall like a piece of paper folding up in the breeze. The side that fell over had "BUTTER" painted on it in 20 foot letters. An excavator was knocking down the whole building, one wall at a time. Then I notice the low building we were standing next to was falling down, but had all of these cool, colorful old metal advertising signs on its inside walls next to us. So my friend and I pulled down a whole sheet of the metal signs, about 6 feet long, and started rolling them up like a map. When I got the coil under my arm and heading back up to the state highway, this guy with a dark forest green uniform stopped me and said he was assistant something from the Forest Service, and wanted to talk to me. I figured he was busting me for stealing the metal signs. But he asked me for my drivers license and said it was because I fit the description of a robbery suspect from China, Maine. After he looked at my license he asked me if I had any older copies of my drivers license and I said no and he looked disappointed. Then he said he had to conduct a test on my eyes to confirm my identity. Then he took out a little shiny steel tube like a pen and squirt cigarette smoke into my eyes. He said I had to try to keep my eyes open and not close them when the smoke and mist went in my eyes, which I did. Then I woke up.

No comments: