One thing is for certain, I have done some traveling in this glorious state that we call Maine. I have been from here, to there, and back again. Usually without a map, although there are times when I wish I would have put the male ego on hold for just a quick second.
I have driven around the mountains, and I have ridden through the plains. I have seen the coast, and have looked upon the mirrored images of some of the most beautiful lakes that God has to offer. The coolest thing is that all of these things are in a place called home.
From Lubec, to Rangely, to Kittery, I have loved every minute of it. I have not been as far north as I would have liked to, but I have seen the peaks of Katahdin touch the face of the heavens, and it was, in fact, heavenly. It sure was an amazing site to see snow on the peaks of her majesty late into June. I will never forget the site.
Nor will I forget the site of “Oh My Gosh” corner up north of Kingfield. The first time I rounded the corner, I could hear myself under my breath say, “Oh My Gosh”. It is the corner heading towards Eustis when you finally come face to face with Sugarloaf Mountain. Unbelievable is the best word I can find to describe it.
There are so many routes that I can travel in my head. Like I said in my last post, I have traveled from “Skowhegan to Farmington a thousand times in my mind. I can picture every turn and bridge and hill and frost heave. The trip will remain with me forever.
Likewise with Jackman to Bingham, or Belfast to Rockland. Newport to Bangor on the I. If I have to travel these trips in my mind, I will be a happy man.
So many things I have taken for granted over my existence. So many things I have just overlooked. We all do I feel. It is just so common place that we become blind to the beauty and forget how lucky we are to live in such a wicked cool place. We are blessed.
I travel to our destinations in my mind now. I do not have the luxury of overlooking anything. I can see the old exempted railroad bridge in North Anson. I can see the bridge to Campobello Island. I can see Mount Washington from a ridge in Skowhegan. I can see the new Narrows Bridge in Bucksport. I see the Wire Bridge in New Portland. I see Mooselookmaguntook Lake from The Height of the Land in Oquossoc, and let me tell you, it is just fascinating to remember. From the Belfast Bridge to the ride along the Kennebec down through The Forks, I would not trade the memories for anything, well, maybe a big old bag of Hershey kisses?
Nope, no way, that doesn’t even come close.
I can see it all.
I have always been able to map things out fairly well in my mind, and I thank God now for that gift. I am left with a clear vision of the beauty that this state has flooded my brain with all these years. It is a wonderful memory to see. A sight that I will go to my grave with.
From the fire red and orange blueberry fields off from the airline, to the sea gulls lining the public Warf in Rockland, to Smalls Falls in Madrid. It is all inside me, and I hope it finds its way inside all of us who have seen.
I can see the pier at Old Orchard Beach from Pine Point. I can see the light house at Wes Quoddy Head. The red and white stripes are forever burnt into my mind. I see the wall at North Gorham where I finally dared to dive off when I was 7 or 8. I see Sebago Lake through the trees driving to Long Beach. I can still smell the sun tan lotion.
I see downtown Augusta from the Kennebec bridge. I can see the swans swimming in Deering Oaks Park in Portland with the little hmodel house sitting on the tiny island. I still can see the old wood post and cable guard rails on Route 1 heading down east. A trip back through time for sure.
I wish I could tell my Grandson Jack what I see, but it is just as good to tell him what I remember. He will see, in time. He will hopefully understand that what he is seeing, I am also seeing, just from a different perspective.
Let’s take a ride, you and I. I am picturing a trip from Brooks to Dixmont. The hills roll long and high. The land is country farms with plush meadows with winding brooks curving through them. The road winds up high, and then dips down fast. There is an old farm on the left that sits on a hill. Surely it is a gift from God. It is breathtaking. It is a jig saw puzzle. It is a post card for sale in the general store just over the next hill. You know the one on Dixmont corner?
Can you picture it?