Back in America: Maine

Hey All! To give an excuse for my lacking in posts, I haven’t had a means of connecting my camera to my computer. I figured posts without photos would be too boring. But! I have managed to transfer a few, so lets all hear about Maine!

For those of you who do not live in the USA, Maine is the most northeastern state. It is a part of what is considered “New England,” along with Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut. The first European settlement in Maine was in 1604, and the first English settlement was in 1607. It used to be attached to Massachusetts, but became its own state for political reasons on March, 15th, 1820 and it became the 23rd state. Maine is known for it’s lobster, and hilariously enough, it’s state animal is the moose.

People from Maine have a unique accent, to speak like a Mainer, here are some tips:

  • Words that end in -er are pronounced with an -ah. Car becomes “cah.”
  • Words that end in -a are pronounced with an -er. Idea becomes “ideer.”
  • Drop the g in -ing. Stopping is stoppin’.

We flew in from Zürich to Philadelphia, and then we were going to catch another plane to Maine. The plane arrived late, and it took about 90 minutes to get through the passport check alone, and then another hour to go back through security, so despite having a 2 hour layover we missed our flight. We hung out at the airport for a few hours, changing flights, and hanging out on standby before the airline gave us a hotel room for the night, and a guaranteed flight the next morning. It was slightly awkward though because there were other people on standby, and for some reason coming from Europe gave us priority over them, or perhaps because it was the airlines fault we missed our flight, but hearing them complain to the airport-people as we walked away was weird.

We made it safe and sound to Maine the next day, and commenced our family reunion joy! This reunion was for Jeff’s father’s side of the family, and that meant there was 14 people clambering around their property in Maine, including significant others.

We spent the week enjoying delicious food, and making jokes about what it meant to be a member of this family. Apparently, it means: computer science, porcupine poop, and there always being something to fix.

The property the family owns is affectionately called “Old Point,” and the cabin on the property is named “The Catbird Seat.” James Thurber wrote a story called The Catbird Seat, but it is a phrase that implies having the best seat in the house, or having an upper-hand in a situation.  The property is about 100 acres, and includes several acres of preserved coastline, which is significant when compared to the neighbors who have bulldozed trees to put up fancy houses with big yards.

 

When we weren’t eating, we were being outdoorsy and canoeing, windsurfing, and playing frisbee golf. One thing this family seemed to enjoy was “trail blazing,” which means they go out in the woods with axes, saws, and hedge clippers, and try to “maintain” a “trail” that supposedly at one point existed. Honestly, this adventure was pretty fun, despite the confusion and absurdity of it all. At one point, I decided I was done with trying to find the old trail, and that I was going to just take these woods by force. Jeff’s cousin later told me it would of been much faster to just go back the way we had came to get out of the woods, but my mission was less about getting out of the woods, and more about proving to the woods that I didn’t need some stinking trail.  I proceeded to hulk-smash and climb my way out of the woods, with Jeff’s family close behind me. Eventually we came out roughly where we were supposed to, and I considered those woods blazed.

 

While we were in Maine, we got to see a bunch of wildlife. Such as a hummingbird that hung out at the Catbird, a raccoon that came over for dinner each night, deer that roamed through the woods, and Jeff and I almost running over a porcupine and its baby one night. AND I saw lightning bugs for the first time. Lightning bugs may be the most awesome thing to grace this earth. If you haven’t seen them before, check out this video:http://youtu.be/u_-hbsDGJag

 

 

 

One our last day in Maine, a group of us enjoyed the waterfront, skipping rocks and diverting small streams. It is a great property that the family is lucky to have. It has served many purposes over the years, as summer homes, vacation spot, and a refuge for the recent college grad. My only complaint would be the mosquitoes. I hate mosquitoes. If it was possible, I would genetically modify myself to sweat deet. In spite of that though, Maine was pretty sweet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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