Our rout from Portland, ME to Franconia Notch State Park, New Hampshire
took us from the interstate onto some country roads. The going was a bit slow, but the pace was a refreshing change from the city and heavy traffic we experienced on the previous days. While the interstates are a great way to get quickly from one place to the next, it’s not until you get off them that you truly get a feel for the way of life you are passing through. Once you really enter a place where people live, you see potted flowers and clothes carefully hung on the line to dry-evidence that real people live there; people mowing their lawns and riding a bike with shopping bags on the handle bars. Things for sale by owner give you a glimpse into the real lives of those people: a boat, once new and full of promise, now being sold; the family van for sale-maybe all the children have moved on for a life far from home. It’s all a reminder that while I vacation, other people are moving on with their routine, that behind each person I see is not just a person, but an entire life.
This drive also took us from coastal Maine into the Appalachian Range, and seeing mountains on the horizon was a comfort to me, reminding me how much I love them. While it’s easy to find beauty everywhere, mountains make me feel the security of home.