Saturday, October 5, 2013

Our Maine Friends

From Boothbay we followed Eileen and Carl back to Winthrop and spent over a week in their home. With our many visits to Maine we have seen more of Maine than any other state and now know why so many from all over the US have holiday homes there. The summers are cool and mostly free of humidity, the coast is rugged and the bays, lakes and fjords are great for sailing and swimming; all with lovely little towns to explore. The holiday homes are beautiful and must have little need for air conditioners.

For the first time in a long time we had strong Wi-Fi and were able to Facetime our family and not receive a “poor connection” message every so often; which is frustrating for us all. We had a nice warm bed and on the chillier evenings had a log fire to keep us warm and cozy. We had home cooked meals and…yes we had lobster - Eileen is an expert lobster cook. Now we are asking ourselves “why are we in the RV again”?
Carl and Eileen took us on several more tours; first we went to Mount Washington in New Hampshire where we had hoped to drive to the summit but due to hurricane winds at the top the auto road was closed. On our way we drove through the towns of Norway, Paris, Bridgeton, Rome and Naples. We had lunch in the Muddy Moose in Conway and were introduced to Zeb’s Store. The fall colors were beginning to show as we drove along passing lakes called Long Lake, Peabody Lake and Crystal Lake; very enjoyable!  

For our next trip we visited Eileen's Alma Mater in the town of Farmington; a lovely campus which we walked around and Eileen commented that nothing had changed since she graduated. After the campus tour we had a delicious lunch and went shopping - we all had a great rummage in a shop called Renys - a Maine department store that sells almost everything. The weather was glorious, a real Indian summer.

Two years ago we helped Carl, after a lovely boat ride; take his boat off the lake for the winter; so this visit we planned to do so again. As the engine would not start we had to revise plans, literally pushing and hauling the boat from its mooring on to the trailer – yes we all got wet and then Carl pulled the trailer and boat up a steep incline about 100 yards from their home – a first time for Carl, we suspect not the last. We had our much beloved little Blue Bug serviced at the auto shop where Carl has had his vehicles serviced for over 30 years – the mechanics advice was not to spend too much money on repairs! Blue Bug is 14 years old, has served us well so we know that this is good advice. One day we went to an apple orchard and picked Cortland and Macintosh apples and learned at check-out that Cortland apples make great pies. A few days later we returned for more apples to bake more of Eileen's grandmother’s pie recipe.
Adele went with Eileen to the card making class she teaches and met 4 lovely ladies who made 5 cards in record time and shared ideas. After class they shared lunch, much like Newcomers. The next card class Adele joined was much easier, this time Eileen was the only expert and here Adele met another 4 ladies who took the two hours to make two cards.

On Friday morning we had an early start supposedly for Carl to purchase his hunting license in Augusta. Carl parked at the salon where Vanessa their daughter is a hairdresser and Adele was totally surprised by Tom with a late birthday present. Eileen and Tom conspired via email with one another for weeks and made an appointment for Adele to have a cut and color; Adele had no idea and was completely surprised to the enjoyment of all.
Sunday was once again a glorious day and Carl had a full car as Vanessa and her son Noah joined us for the drive to Fryeburg Fair (the reason given to Adele for the longer stay); this is a huge fair, with prize animals on show, oxen and horse pulling competitions, horse and buggy parades, tractors trailers, arts and crafts, rides and food. The fair first held in 1851; about 300,000 people attend annually. There was what we can only describe as a city of RV’s on the fairgrounds; our estimate is over 3,000 RV’s parked on site.

We had planned on leaving early on Monday but with having to fill the RV with gas, put air in the tires, attach the tow dolly and secure the bikes to the ladder it was after lunch before we took our leave of our Maine friends, sorry to depart but with a promise to meet one another in Florida in January 2014.

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