July Song- The Island 

So as I was thinking of which song to feature this month, I thought about when I had written the songs on this album. My memory is hazy but I know exactly where and about when I was when I wrote The Island.
The year was about 2001 and I was working on the NOAA Ship RUDE as a Survey Technician. The RUDE (pronounced Rudy) was working primarily in Long Island Sound that summer. Every other weekend, when I didn't have in-port security watches, I would hop in my blue Subaru station wagon when the ship pulled in on Friday afternoons and head to the line for the Port Jeff-Bridgeport ferry. Off the ferrry in Bridgeport and I would continue north through Connecticut, into Masschusetts, then west into New York before heading north again in Utica. Skimming the edge of the Adirondacks, I head to Clayton, New York or Gananoque, Ontario where I'd meet up with a cousin and head to the island for the weekend.
The island is a very special place to me. One particular weekend, after working 16 to 20 hour days on the RUDE and having an overnight watch or early morning watch, I can't remember, I was awake early and sitting on the porch, taking in the beauty of the 1000 Islands. This song just came to me as I was quietly strumming so as not to wake anyone in the cabin. The lyrics really sum up my sense of place about the river and the island. Anyone who knows me well knows where it sits in my heart.
Shortly after the song came out, and I think it was the same morning, I heard a horrific grinding sound. I looked around the corner of the cottage and nice looking sailboat had run-aground on the shoal at the head of a nearby island. I went to the dock and hopped in the rowboat, fired up the outboard and went out to offer assistance. The boat was really hard aground on the shoal and there was no way that the little rowboat had any chance of pulling it off. By this time, my cousin had awakened and came down to help out. We hopped into their larger boat, picked up my now awakened father on out dock (which, by the way, is the earliest in recent memory that my father was awake on the island), and headed out to pull the boat off the rock. I ended up pulling down on their mainsheet halyard while my cousin gunned the engine and worked them off the shoal. They stopped and waved us over to them. On approach, we had a quick conference about what to do if they offered us a reward. All three of us agreed that no reward was neccessary. They offered us a case of beer. My cousin and I begrudgingly turned it down, mumbling something or other about our islands being dry. As we were heading back to the island, we had a good laugh about not considering what to do if they offered us beer.
It was later in this day that my cousin and I developed the idea of stealing a hot dog cart. On the quay of a local town, a vendor had begun selling hot dogs from a hot dog cart, like you'd see in any big city. We found this idea to be comically absurd. What we thought would be even funnier than a hot dog cart in this small town was a hot dog cart being stolen from a small town. For the entire rest of the summer, we came up with more and more absurd ways of stealing this hot dog cart, none of which ever came to fruition. My personal favorite idea was tying a rope around the hot dog cart when the vendor wasn't looking, then attaching the other end of the rope to a tourist hovercraft, an increasingly annoying tourist feature that year and for a few years to come. The hovercraft was loud and it would come in really close to the islands, obliterating the peace and quiet. We thought it would be really funny to see the hovercraft towing a hot dog cart out across the river, skipping across the water like a stone, or the last time I remember my father waterskiing, spewing hot dogs and buns from it's innerds.....the hot dog cart, by the way, not my father. Let's face it, that would have been hilarious. Remind me some time to tell you the story of the sub nazi, and event that happened that very same summer.....