Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Maine Vignette No. 2

The Sound and the Sulfury

Two picturesque cottages, very small, each with a bedroom/living room and a small kitchen, and that's about it. Across the street from the only sand beach in the area, beautiful view. Available for the week of the wedding, so we get them, taking one of the cottages for ourselves and leaving the other one for another couple up for the wedding. The fact that dogs are allowed lets us bring Nora and Junebug with us, something they would certainly enjoy.

The night before we head north, I work out the details of our arrival with the owner's son, at which point he informs me that the well water isn't drinkable, and that as a courtesy he's sticking a couple of gallons of bottled water in each refrigerator. It doesn't fully sink in what that means until we arrive. The word of the week is Spartan, as in, we have Spartan accommodations. The water reeks of sulfur, and the iron in it causes it to be brown sometimes. Kathy reluctantly showers in it, and despises that we have to wash Emelia's bottles in it. We don't cook with it, partly due to health fears, but equally because the tiny kitchen isn't meant for cooking. It allows for little more than heating frozen pizzas. Among other defects, the sink is very shallow, and leaks around its edges. The cottages are in a beautiful location, to be sure, and hanging out on the deck or by the fire pit is quite lovely. All the same, the interior makes for a trying week.

Word to the wise -- never rent a place that doesn't show its interior among the photos. And a request for anyone who rents out a house -- you really should disclose in your ad if your accommodations don't provide drinkable water.