When I was a little girl, getting my father's boat ready for a new season of sailing off the coast of our small town in Massachusetts was an annual undertaking. Varnish and paint would waft through the air on the first few Saturdays of a cool New England spring, while my sister and brother and I would play on the rocks at low tide and warm ourselves in the sunshine.
Getting Pilgrim's Inn up and running every year always brings back those memories. Like a boat, we take her out of her deep winter sleep by opening up the windows, and beginning the annual ritual of painting, cleaning and fixing the bumps and bruises from the previous year.
This year several projects are on our list, including phone and internet upgrades that will give guests wi-fi access anywhere on the property, along with free long distance from any phone. We are also greatly anticipating "real" cell phone service here on Deer Isle. A cell tower has been raised, and we eagerly look at our cell phones every morning to see if the service has been turned on! We are also installing improved lighting in both of our parking lots.
Another change this year is the expansion of our bar area into our small dining room, the "tap room". New benches, oversized leather chairs, and coffee tables will create a comfortable area for relaxing and enjoying drinks from the bar and "small bites" from our kitchen.
Finaly, we are turning part of our field into an area for playing Petanque (pronounced "pay-tonk"). Petanque is one of Europe's most popular outdoor games, and is a cousin of both horseshoes and of the Italian bowling game called 'bocce'. The game originated in the South of France in the early 1900's. Chef Max Mattes introduced owner Tony Lawless to the game last year and the two are frequently found in our parking lot, or in Max's driveway, taking a break and playing a quick game before heading back to the kitchen. It is loads of fun and we look forward to introducing our guests to this addictive game.
Today the temperature outside is in the low forties -- quite a change from yesterdays balmy sixty degrees-- and a reminder that mother nature is not quite ready to let go of winter. But we know warmer weather is coming and are looking forward to welcoming you back or meeting you for the first time.