Guess what! I am writing to you with parchment and quill (okay, pen and paper) like a Victorian-era protagonist. With a pen in hand and notebook on lap, the words are springing to you without the aid of a dictionary or a thesaurus (gasp!).
For those of you who have read part 1 of this post (more here), you will know that my lack of sophisticated technology is the result of my most recent island adventure to Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire. This small island (just about one mile in perimeter) is privately owned and offers cabin rentals for individuals, families, and groups like my Boston-based one.
The purpose of this weekend is rest and relaxation, however, the island lacks a few noticeable creature comforts….
Electronics policy. Phones, tablets, laptops, and even Kindles should neither be seen nor heard outside the cabin area. This meant that even the odd picture taken on an iPhone would be looked upon with disapproving eyes. While I understand that #selfies 24/7 and TikTok filming can detract from the outdoor experience, the outright prohibition can also put one on edge (especially if you would like to simply take a picture or read by the lake).
No electricity. The two-person cabins are rudimentary structures with screened windows, no insulation, no running water, and no electricity. This means no artificial light, heating, cooling, or even a source to charge your illicit electronics overnight. The scant shelter also means that when it’s warm outside, it’s warm in the cabins. When it’s cold outside, it’s cold in the cabins. When it’s noisy outside… you get the picture.
No flush toilets. Just like multitudes of Homo sapiens before us, we on this island had to do our business in a hole. As far as outhouses go (and quality varies quite a bit), these were on the nicer end (thank the high heavens!).
A dark, dark wood. Almost no electricity on the island (except for in the kitchen, on the dock, and at the main houses) means that night is as dark as, well, night. One of my first adventures after arriving was our twilight trek to the cabins (my shared one happened to be on the far side of the island). While I found myself going in circles at different points (all trails lead to an outhouse, I swear!), I also got a weird thrill shuffling around the island at night with nothing more than my headlight illuminating the path.
All in all, life on the island is simple. There was paddling, swimming, board games, and even a few musical instruments. We tolerated the bugle’s clarion call to enjoy family-style meals on the porch. We prepared s’mores by the fire, sang “Let It Be” to the strumming of the guitar, and chatted into the darkness and lateness of the hour.
After the weekend we had, it’s no wonder that so many were reluctant to pack their bags and board the Sunday ferry back to the mainland. For me, I understand the sentiment of wanting to prolong a beautiful moment, but on a whole, I’m ready to head back to Boston, shower (yeah, we weren’t doing that on the island) and bask in the warmth of my climate controlled, spider-free home.
Enjoy yourself, dear Reader.