There’s Something About Maine

800px-Portland_Head_Lighthouse,_Maine

It’s hard to describe what exactly it is about Maine, but there’s something . . .

Maine is a unique and inviting place in so many ways. It has always felt like home to me even long before there was any glimmer of chance of actually living there. Over the past 4 years I spent one week every Summer in Rockport which is in the heart of Mid Coast Maine. Attending the Maine Media Workshops throws you directly into the community on various assignments. My first thoughts were always ones of dread. “They expect me to approach complete strangers and ask them to help me by participating in my projects?”  These assignments, on first glance, put me way out of my comfort zone. After all, I’m from CT and I’m just not used to approaching strangers. And I’m certainly not used to these strangers bending over backwards to help me as if I was there long lost family. The thing is, in Maine, it feels like there are no strangers.

After my first experience living among the locals in Maine I thought I just got really lucky by the folks that I encountered. I remember coming back home to Karlo and trying to explain the feelings that Maine left me with. It was hard to explain then and it continues to be hard to explain today.

Fast forward a few more years and it just can’t be luck. I’m convinced that the folks in Maine are just simply a different breed of people. So friendly, so welcoming, so patient, so genuine, so different from what I’m used to. Karlo and I have spent the last 12 years traveling together. We’ve been to some pretty spectacular places and we always played the game of imagining ourselves living in these various locations. Aside from Boulder, CO not one of these places that we loved visiting so much could ever lure us to live there. None except Maine. Every single time we ever visited Maine we simply did not want to leave the place.

Sometimes I still have trouble believing that this dream of ours is becoming a reality. I’m in the middle of packing up our house, but it still has not completely sunken in. I know that most of my friends have bets going on how long I’ll last “in the cold North” as if I’m leaving a tropical location to go there. I hope we haven’t over-glamorized the ideal of Maine. I pray that it’s all we hoped it would be. I crave a new life style where we can slow down every aspect of our life. I want to change my evil ways and I want to become a true Mainer. I want to be that patient, friendly, generous neighbor and be proud of the stereotypical Mainer characteristics. Well, maybe not all of them, but certainly some of them. If you ever catch me wearing bright orange clothing . . . anywhere, just shoot me!

Jeff Foxworthy’s you might live in Maine:

If you have ever refused to buy something because it’s “too spendy”,
You might live in Maine

If someone in a store offers you assistance, and they don’t work there,
You might live in Maine

If you have worn shorts and a parka at the same time,
You might live in Maine

If your town has an equal number of bars and churches,
You might live in Maine

If you know how to say…Wicked. .. Up to camp. . Ayuh. Can’t get there from heyah,
You might live in Maine

If you think that ketchup is a little too spicy,
You might live in Maine

If you measure distance in hours,
You might live in Maine

If you know several people, who have hit deer more than once,
You might live in Maine

If you often switch from “Heat” to “A/C” in the same day and back again,
You might live in Maine

If you can drive 65 mph through 2 feet of snow during a raging blizzard without flinching and keep drinking coffee,
You might live in Maine

If you see people wearing hunting clothes at social events,
You might live in Maine

If you install security lights on your house and garage and leave both unlocked,
You might live in Maine

If you carry jumper cables in your car, and your wife or girlfriend knows how to use them,
You might live in Maine

If there are 7 empty unlocked cars running in the parking lot at Hannafords at any given time,
You might live in Maine

If driving is better in the winter because the potholes are filled with snow,
You might live in Maine

If you know all 4 seasons: almost winter, winter, still winter, and of course, road construction,
You might live in Maine

If your idea of creative landscaping is a plastic deer next to your blue spruce,
You might live in Maine

If “Down South” to you means Boston,
You might live in Maine

If you know “scat” is something you don’t eat,
You might live in Maine

If you find -10 degrees “a little chilly”,
You might live in Maine