Sunday, August 27, 2017

Pleasant Memories

Google Street View
Growing up, we would go over to Maine (from Vermont) a couple of times every summer. Sometimes for just the day, sometimes overnight, staying in a small motel between days at the beach. Wells, Maine was always a favorite place.

When I was still in the Air Force, my Mom and Dad managed to get a place of their own in Wells. It wasn't much, just a trailer my Dad bought from a contact at his work place (which surprised Mom, a lot), which sat on a rented plot at a sort of camp ground, motor home park. Like I said, it wasn't much but it was awesome.

The trailer sat on that patch of land in the opening photo just to the left of that tree with the red leaves (which was where Dick and Peg's place was, full timers there). Right where that walled off area sits. (No, I have no idea what that is, the next photo is an overhead view, the yellow arrow shows where their trailer used to be.) That building to the right was not there. It's why my parents don't have their place anymore.

Google Earth
Back in '97 is the first time I got a look at the place. I flew back to the States from Germany with The Naviguessor in August so he could attend NROTC INDOC (which is a story for another time, all three of the progeny went through it, it's only a week, but felt longer), prior to the start of his freshman year at Worcester Polytech.

My Mom and I drive him down to Worcester, met The Naviguessor's instructors (one of whom was, of course, a Marine Drill Instructor), had a cook out with the staff and the other new midshipmen, then Mom and I headed up to Maine for a couple of days so I could see their place. (Dad had to work, otherwise he would have been there. Dad loved Maine.)

I loved it at first sight. I've always loved Maine but now my parents had their own place there. Knowing that I'd be retiring in a couple of years, I envisioned being able to visit Maine from time to time and stay at their place.

Well, it worked out just like that for a few years. Until some rich guy bought the land, tossed all the seniors out (there were more there than just my parents, most of them lived there full time) and my parents had to get rid of the trailer. But it was great while it lasted.

My Dad spent as much time as he could up there. Even in the winter. He said it was the only time he could enjoy the beach as it wasn't very crowded!

I have fond memories of that place. Miss it.

Google Street View
This restaurant, The Fisherman's Catch, was just down the hill from my parents' place. Good food, nothing fancy, think paper plates, plastic utensils and paper towels on wires above the tables. As you might expect, seafood was their specialty and they did it well. The place was right on the edge of the salt marshes. Beautiful surroundings.

One year Dad got a video camera for Christmas. A few days afterwards he was up in Maine playing around with it, walking down the road in these pictures. As he went by the restaurant he announced that this was "The Catch of the Day, er, The Fisherman's Wharf, er, some damned restaurant whose name I can't remember." Ever since we purposely would misname it just to get him riled up.

Worked every time.

(The other funny thing about that day was that Dad unknowingly left the camera on while he strolled down the road, muttering about everything under the sun. Hhmm, I just realized that when I'm driving by myself, I sound just like my Dad. Not sure if that's a good thing!)

Another view of The Catch of the Day, er, I mean The Fisherman's Catch...

Google Street View
I always got a charge out of the old fishing boat. I think that's what happens to old boats in Maine, they wind up outside of restaurants!

Google Street View
Another view of the boat, the salt marshes in the background. Go past that treeline in the distance and you're in the Atlantic.

Google Street View
The salt marshes to the south of the road, see a lot of cranes, egrets, cormorants, ducks, and the like out there. Oh yes, and seagulls. Lots of seagulls around, though they don't really hang out in the marshes.

Google Street View
The red circle is where my parents' place was, all that green is the marshes. The place labeled Hobbs Harborside, used to be Lord's Harborside where the food was fantastic and the staff superb. Yes, it has slipped a bit at the new place. I ate at Hobbs once, just for old time's sake. It wasn't the same. Okay, but meh.

Dad told me of a time when he and Mom went there for lunch and George and Barbara Bush were in attendance, as was Waylon Jennings. (The Bush place in Kennebunkport is just up the coast from Wells, been by there a few times. On the road, not to visit. More's the pity...)

Spent a long weekend with my Dad in Wells. He took me up to Portland for a job interview (he had a blast motoring me around after I retired, helping me look for a job). I remember well sitting around in the living room, having a beer or two with the old man, watching Kelly's Heroes on his little TV. Nothing fancy but I remember it well.

Heck, even our old cat Pat visited the place one weekend along with the rest of the family. He seemed to like it.

Pleasant memories of a time now long gone.

It's been too long since I visited Maine, three years to be exact (I wrote of the last visit here, when The Missus Herself and I went up for the weekend with my Mom). I need to get back up there.

But it isn't the same, not since the "old" days when they had their own place.

I miss that place.

I miss my Dad...


  1. "I sound just like my Dad. Not sure if that's a good thing!"
    With each passing day, I find myself sounding more and more like him. Mannerisms, sayings, frustrations, enthusiasms. Heck, I'm even starting to look like him.
    I'm pretty sure, both your Dad and Mine have met up and are looking down saying, "Took 'em long enough, but they finally seem to be turning out just fine!"

    1. Heh. I can picture that. Hope it's so.

      And Lord knows it really did take me long enough!

  2. Still on my bucket list to visit New England. Your pictures and pics from a friend who lives in NH just seem to draw my spirit that direction!!

    1. I highly recommend fall, for the colors.

      Spring for the awakening of all the stuff that's been dormant since the fall.

      Summer for the beaches, the lakes, the mountains, and the sheer joy which is innit.

      Winter, only if you like the cold and snow. Oddly enough I do, for the most part. There's nothing like the blue of a New England sky after a fresh snowfall. The world seems to be made of diamonds!

    2. Such memories!
      ...ah, such memories...

  3. Yup, I'm positive now. As we get to the age where we look like dad, sound like dad, think like dad, and act like dad, we start to long for our youthful stompin' grounds. I don't know if it's the thought that those days are long gone, or we remember them clearer 'cause dad was there.... Might be because things are starting to wind down, family-wise, and we have time to remember....

    Thanks for showing me your ancestral lands.... mine looked like a bowl of dusty brown, broken up by tan, with some large trees all wind-chapped, bowing to the northeast.... (they were fairly tall, always grouped around a house, doubtless well watered by the tears of the pioneer women)... But the stars at night went from horizon to horizon, no problem back then seeing the milky way.... And earth-turns were always worth watching.....

    1. The sky is still pretty clear where my Mom still lives, can still see the Milky Way on a clear night.

  4. If my brother in law (MB's brother) still lives in Maine the next time we head east, we may vist.
    He and his wife cheat, though, and winter in the Florida Panhandle.
    It recently dawned on me that he's an oafs, too.

    Maine sounds good right now.
    It's supposed to reach 106 today.

    1. 106?!?!?

      Nice late summer 74 here in Little Rhody.

      It's been hot out there lately, no thanks!

    2. It made it to 108.
      I was texting with my son in law in Anderson about the temperatures.
      He was under the impression it didn't get as hot in the Sacramento area.
      I told him he didn't hear much about our temps because we had other things besides the weather to talk about.

    3. Many other things.

      Sometimes it's nice to only have weather to talk about...

  5. Thanks for the post.

    Paul L. Quandt

  6. I've accidentally recorded myself out and about a few times. I bitch more than I realized and talk like a sailor. Quite frequently I order myself around like a seaman. I'm quite good at giving direction, less good at taking direction.

  7. Hold those memories close, and remember the good times. We can't go back, it's never the same.


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Can't be nice, go somewhere else...

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