I’ve a little more than an hour on the plane to express to you in words what seems inescapably difficult to grasp; why I went to Portland. Lately in my writing endeavors I feel more like the photographer attempting to freeze a moment that might capture more than a thousand words, yet you know that being there could’ve left you speechless like me. I would rather visit Antarctica than just see photos of it. I know it’s not the same. Is that why I just returned from Maine? There was something in early October that I had to experience that couldn’t be captured in any other art form except existence. If I show you some photos from my trip, you just wouldn’t get it. You’d wonder why I went.
I could write to you about the many pubs we sat in and the local beers Mike and I drank, some aged in oak-barrels, some spiced for seasonal greatness. Or I could tell you about the fine roasted coffee we sipped from Arabica, one of the dozen or so downtown, corner coffeehouses we passed. I could try to describe to you the changing of leaves we set our eyes upon from arrival to departure, rafting down Dead River category four rapids near Canada, or the yellow and red surrounding the city scene on every street turn, but sadly you weren’t with me experiencing Maine in transition.
I could try to describe to you Becky’s Diner on the main coastal strip where our waitress, Cameron chuckled as we admitted to being unfamiliar with haddock (quite delightful fish). There was also the hefty red-boiled lobster on the waterfront, and the tasty burger at the Great Lone Bear, a local joint in town. We met some folks and developed friendships, and of course amongst it all, watched and listened to Sufjan Stevens at the Port City Music Hall in a small crowd next to a couple of students from Gordon College. The whole getaway seemed right, as if our place was etched out for us there, and we rode in just in time to fill in the colors, the details.
And even though you weren’t there, I can tell you, things don’t just happen at random, but are intricately connected to something greater. I can be sure that I was supposed to be there. One thing I’ve been attempting to grasp lately is that it’s a healthy virtue to understand my place and be okay existing in it, to be happy and joyful where I am. And maybe that’s all I want to express. For the weekend, I was meant to be in Maine, and as I return, I know that I am supposed to be here, wherever and whatever here is. I’m all in. So if you’re still wondering why I left, I’m sorry. Maybe next time, I’ll leave you speechless.