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Chapter 022 The no sex cabins

An interesting design feature of our cabin is that the walls in the four upstairs bedrooms don’t go all the way to the ceiling. They’re only six-and-a-half feet tall – enough to provide visual privacy but the gap between the top of the walls and the ceiling makes for a lack of auditory privacy. Sounds from any bedroom are broadcast with only minimal attenuation to the other three bedrooms. So there was a tacit understanding among the residents, that unless they were upstairs alone, sex was a pretty tricky business, to be performed carefully and quietly or not at all. Also, the two old metal frame double beds in the master bedroom and the northeast guest bedroom squeak loudly when moved and can easily be made to rock into the wooden, sounding-board walls.

So, on more than one occasion, shortly after retiring for the night, voices from a first-time-at-camp couple could be heard whispering, “Do you think they’re asleep yet?” At which point the more experienced camp residents would put in their ear plugs and roll over.


Cousin Matt’s camp wasn’t much better when it came to sound insulation. One weekend, while Matt was still in law school, he brought his then girlfriend, Ingrid, to camp. Since his parents were also there, Matt and Ingrid decided to go out in the boat to get some privacy. It was late and dark, and as Matt was hauling in the boat from its mooring, he slipped on some wet rocks, feel forward, stuck out his hands to break his fall, and badly sliced open one of his fingers. A trip to the emergency room at Thayer Hospital in Waterville ensued, where Matt was attended by Dr. John Paul Jones, a local obstetrician and gynecologist, who was the emergency room physician on duty that night. Dr. Jones sutured and bandaged Matt’s finger and scheduled a follow-up visit a week later in his office.

At the appointed time, Matt found himself the only man waiting in an office full of women. And since his maleness was not accompanied by a woman in need of ob/gyn services, he attracted some questioning stares. Finally, one lady turned to Matt and asked, “Are you waiting to see Dr. Jones?” “Yes,” replied Matt, “Dr. John Paul Jones. He’s my gynecologist.” The lady thought this over in stoic Maine fashion for a bit, turned back to Matt, patted him gently on the knee, and in a kindly and concerned tone said, “Well, I certainly hope he can help you.”