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  • (cont'd from "Sentinels")

    We accomplished our mission over Sutton Island, then set a meandering course for home. By that time the sun was well aloft, and the fog completely masked all of Penobscot Bay. All that could be seen of the immense embayment was the highest peak on Isle au Haut, the Camden Hills and in the middle of it all, the tops of the turbines, 300 feet above Vinalhaven’s granite headlands. It was certainly an otherworldly view of them and we circled a few times to get this image which I’ve titled Prophets.

    The title primarily refers to the vision it took on the part of the community to make this extraordinary project happen. Out there on their rock in the bay they took on a challenge that had defeated other mainland communities possessed of far greater financial resources.

    They saw the future and they wanted a piece of it and, by God, they just plain did it.

    I have to admit, there’s a double entendre at play here; projects on this scale are, in the end, all about money and the notion of how the islands are profiting from this effort is lost on no one, hence “profits.”

    The coda to this is that by the time we were ready to land, the local airstrip was closed due to the dense fog. After circling for a while, keen for a sufficient hole in the clouds, we ended up flying off to the west just a bit and landed on the rough extension of a local golf driving range where we waited out the fog for perhaps an hour, then roared back into the clearing sky and were home for lunch.

    It was, in all, an utterly perfect morning.

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