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Vassalboro Travel Blog

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CRAZZZY to be back in Maine again! :^)

So I caved.  After serving as Treasurer for Friends of Merrymeeting Bay (FOMB – a conservation land trust) back in the 90’s when we lived right next to this splendid natural landmark, and subsequently as ‘virtual’ treasurer from 2004-12, I allowed myself to be talked into the role once again.  On the plus side, this necessitated a return to Maine to grab the books and re-register my signature with the local bank.

Of course I timed the visit to overlap a pair of fall festivals, beginning with Common Ground on Sunday.  Thus I arranged to crash with my buddy Nate and family at his place in Vassalboro, near to Unity, Maine, where the festival is held.

Nate's back yard...

Departed Ohio in the AM and after connecting through Charlotte, NC, I landed in Portland around 3:30PM.  I will never be able to express the glee I feel each time I disembark here – always marvelous. After scoring rental wheels it was roughly an hour-and-a-half drive to Vassalboro.

So good to land at Nate’s place.  In the years we have been apart Nate got married to Jess and they have two boys: Henry (3 years) and Johnny (1 year).  Their home is a vintage cape with numerous funky additions built on across the years: seems like most Maine homes share this odd architecture.  The property is situated stunningly, resting in an expansive meadow.  The back windows look west, where New Hampshire’s Mount Washington can be glimpsed despite being eighty miles distant.

The chickens come home to roost each night when the foxes come out to play.

Nate fired up the grill and everyone enjoyed a tasty al fresco dinner, which segued into a relaxed evening with conversation rambling along freely throughout.  Then it was bedtime for boys and chickens.  Jess rounded up the boys and Nate reeled their chickens inside to a cage in the kitchen:  a fox had recently begun reducing the flock by night, so darkness begs seeking refuge for the feathered friends.

The discussion resumed over some beers and what a delight.  I became acquainted with Nate through FOMB and he is a biologist working for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife.  Across his twenty-five years here, Nate has probably done more than any other individual to restore depleted fish stocks in Maine.  Jess is an environmentalist also, so perhaps you can imagine how the chat ranged across natural science topics.  The peaceful outdoor setting was ideal, particularly with the occasional coyote screeching off in the distance.

As much as I adored such a rare treat, I had signed up to run the Common Ground 5K tomorrow morning and staying up late drinking beer was not the best way to prepare.  But of course Nate would not think of letting me turn in before showing off an attribute of his country abode.  Jess went inside and turned out the lights, allowing Nate to point out the M31 galaxy in the Andromeda constellation.  M31 is the closest galaxy to us and the only one visible to the naked eye.  Even so, you are only able to glimpse it in places insulated from the over-illumination generated by mankind. I was clearly out in the dark and enlightened at the same time.

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CRAZZZY to be back in Maine again!…
CRAZZZY to be back in Maine again…
Nates back yard...
Nate's back yard...
The chickens come home to roost ea…
The chickens come home to roost e…
Vassalboro
photo by: vances