The Netherworld of Peaks Island

Although my recent posts of Peaks Island depict a rural get-a-way within the city limits of Portland, as well as a popular tourist destination, it turns out that the island has a bit of a

Plant infestation
Plant infestation

dark side. I discovered this last Friday night when I was out walking with friends. There were some really strange, not to mention scary, figures moving about. Fortunately, I kept my cool and carefully documented a few of these with my camera. What follows are never-before-seen photos of Peaks’ netherworld. The left-hand photo shows one of the island’s plant infestations. I never knew these could loco mote, but it makes sense for explaining how they spread so quickly. Notice the humanesque face—eerie.

Actual witch
Actual witch

Up to this point I thought witches were socially constructed views of some women as evil due to superstitious beliefs held by the community. Not so! They really do exist, and here’s the photo to prove it on the right.

Giant spider
Giant spider

Giant spiders abounded. I found one draped over a car trying to ensnare little kids. On a positive note I found a giant carrot running free purporting its health benefits.

Carrot
Carrot

But if all this wasn’t enough, it turns out the

The nether judge
The nether judge

island has the nether judge. He’s a rather austere character who straddles the four dimensions of space and time of which we are all familiar, along with a fifth nether dimension. As a result, his physical presence is blurred, as shown in the right-hand photo. Islanders actually bring defendants before him for all sorts of offenses.

Apparently no one is immune from Peaks’ nether justice. Appearing before him was a member of Peaks’ landed aristocracy, accused of crimes against good nutrition. He allegedly was discovered eating a baloney

Convicted
Convicted

sandwich on white bread—with mayonnaise. Found guilty, you can see the convicted fading into the netherworld to serve out his sentence (to rid Peaks of all baloney), much to his attorney’s amazement.

Well, I must say, this marks a pretty dramatic end to my stay here on Peaks. My final shoots this week will be a pre-sunrise panorama of the entrance to Portland’s harbor, the Casco Bay Bridge at sunset, and some night exposures of Portland’s Old Port. I’ll cull the thousands of photos I’ve taken, from Greater Portland to Belfast, for a photo book. I would like to return to Peaks next summer to present a “behind the scenes” look at the book’s production, if there’s interest.

My trip has been both fun and reflective. However, I’ll be glad to get back to my own house with my car at-hand in my driveway so I can drive anywhere on the continent.

-From Portland and the mid-coast

Author: Stephen Fielding Images

I'm a retired medical sociologist from the University of Rochester. My publishing experience includes a wide variety of academic articles and a book, "The Practice of Uncertainty" (1999). The mission of my blog is to provide accounts of the natural environment, including photos, in order to raise awareness of its fragility and the impact of climate change. Climate change is the greatest challenge currently faced by humanity. I occasionally write about the impact of climate change using the principles of social scientific writing. To do this I read reputable books and articles on the topic. So when I make statements about climate change you will see a link taking you to the scientific source(s) of the information I provide. As for my independently published photobooks, each has gone through several layers of editing and peer review for both readability and accuracy. This is not to say that everything I say is accurate. Even the New York Times makes mistakes. So, if you find something that is factually incorrect, let me know. I hope you find reading my blog a positive experience. If you do, please encourage your family and friends to have a look. Best wishes, -Steve

3 thoughts on “The Netherworld of Peaks Island”

  1. Hey Steve, This is so fun. Can I share the link to this wonderful blog post on the Peaks Island list serv? I think that other people would enjoy it (and you might pick up some new subscribers).

    Like

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