Maine is flat. Well, not exactly flat, as the surface is a little rumpled and there is a big bump in the middle. Maine has a lot of trees; about 90% of the state is covered with trees. And Maine is made up of a lot of water. Almost 13%. That’s 103%. I know that’s too many.
What else is there to know about Maine? The people of Maine, while not slow-moving, get things done when they get things done, and they don’t make a fuss about it.
Driving north from Boston after our summit climb of Jerimoth Hill in Rhode Island, we cross the state line. Here is the sign that greets us…
YOU’RE IN MAINE
In Maine, there are locks on the doors but Mainers don’t use ‘em. You might engage in animated conversation about how various fried dough treats compare to each other. You are so familiar with the mosquito that you assume it’s a local species of bird. You know the smell of the mill — and yet you don’t even notice it. You have never been more than the second car in line at a red light. Uncle Henry isn’t really your uncle and Stephen King isn’t really your friend even though you’ve avoided saying hi to him in the grocery store because you respect his privacy.
Sports teams have names like the Black Bears and the Sea Dogs. Maine is the only state with an official pie and an official cake. Announcements like this one are common…
The new 2012 dog licenses are now available at the clerk/tax collector office.
If you are from Maine, you talk funny. At least as far as the rest of us are concerned. You are not a Mainer, you are a Mainah. I am over hee-ah, you are over they-uh. You get in your cah with the bumper sticker that reads…
USE YAH BLINKAH
…and you drive up the road apiece to Uncle Henry’s to pick up your lobstah and chowdah. Also one lobstah each for your mothah and for your fathah. You got yourself a scholarship to U Maine? You must be wicked smaht.
As we walk into the Visitors Center at Baxter State Park, the big bump in the middle of Maine, we meet Ranger Bob. He says, “You must be from away.”
“Yeah. How’d you know?”
“You locked your car,” he said. Actually, he said, “You locked your cah.”
In point of fact, Lisa is a native Mainer — Mainah — but she’s been from away for some time.