Category Archives: Maine

Portland, Maine

With my vast 6 days of experience in Maine, if had to live in the state, I would live in Portland. Why? Its a vibrant, active city with architecture, history, culture, all-weather outdoor activities and the people are more than friendly, they are engaged in life, not just superficial consumption.

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But that does not overrule the fact that winter in 6 months long.

No doubt my favorable experience in Portland was due in part to an evening I spent with my friend, The Way North New Yorker, who lives in Portland and is not from NYC. Part of a trinity of friends, she is the most outspoken. Like her NYC brethren, if you ask her a direct question, you will get a direct answer; delivered unblinkingly and without apology. Friends like this are invaluable and very difficult to find.

While my meal with the Way North New Yorker was memorable, I did not take any photos nor did I break from my wine consumption to make notes. No matter, earlier in the day I did make a serious attempt to break my lobster-only diet momentarily by stopping for lunch at Portland Pie Company. The pizza here is NYC-style and excellent. Bonus – you get to choose your crust: Basil, Garlic, White, Wheat and a few others I’ve forgotten.

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The most memorable part of this stop was the server recommended beer, a local variety, Sea Dog Blueberry – crisp, refreshing and with a very distinct but not overpowering blueberry flavor that even my hot-pepper-damaged taste buds could detect. I was thrilled when I discovered it could be acquired locally in Houston.


Cape Elizabeth, Maine

After a disturbingly quiet night in Kennebunkport, I headed toward Portland via Cape Elizabeth. Cape Elizabeth has a number of state parks and lighthouses but I only had time for one.  Rain and low clouds continued but I still enjoyed Two Lights state park.

There were actually two lighthouses but the second one never appeared from under its low cloud hiding place.

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Kennebunkport, Maine

To round out the first day in Maine, Kennebunkport.

Originally I was interested in walking the 5 miles from the Bush compound to the adjacent city north but I made a stop in Kennebunk to see the grounds at the Franciscan Monastery. It was a beautiful, fascinating place and by the time I left it was dark.

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I saw the rest of Kennebunkport the next morning, it was cute but next time in Maine I will skip it.

Ogunquit, Maine

After a 1-2 stop in Cape Neddick I made my way up to the village of Ogunquit. I was interested in Ogunquit only to see the scenery from Marginal Way, a mile walk around the coast which is always highly publicized in Maine travel references. While in Cape Neddick a fellow tourist mentioned that I should definitely try the Lobster Roll at Barnacle Billy’s in Ogunquit since I would be in the neighbourhood.

I’m sure Marginal Way is spectacular when the sun is out, but the rain and low clouds added a sense of mystery.

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I took the advise of my fellow tourist about Barnacle Billy’s. Glad about that. In Maine there are restaurants and there are lobster pounds, the later being bare-bones establishments serving lobster on a plate and not much else. Billy’s is in-between; order at the counter, table delivery. What’s important to note is the Lobster Roll here is excellent. Whats a lobster roll? Take the meat from a whole lobster, toss in a small amount of mayo and spices, serve in toasted bread. Must be accompanied by chips and pickles; I’m fairly certain this is a state mandate. They cost  $18-20 everywhere and I suggest you have as many as possible while in Maine.

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Lunch: 6 Oct 2013

Barnacle Billy’s | 70 Perkins Cove Rd | Ogunquit ME 03907

Cape Neddick, Maine

Leaving Manchester, NH my first stop along the southern coast of Maine was Cape Neddick to see the Nubble Lighthouse. I’m not sure why I’m fascinated by lighthouses, maybe because until this trip I had only seen them in pictures.

It rained most of the day but as a Maine native pointed out – there is no bad weather in Maine, only bad clothing choices. I rather liked the Maine perspective – you can’t do anything about the weather so quit whining, dress appropriately and get on with your day. Luckily I brought my rain poncho and grippy hiking shoes, so off I went down the rocky cliffs  by the ocean to snap a few shots. The lighthouse itself is not accessible and there isn’t much else to see in the surrounding area, so this is a 1-2 stop on the way to somewhere else.

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Just back from a week of hiking coastal Maine, loved it. Maine is difficult to dislike; scenery, lobster, and some of the most quirky, independent people I’ve met

Click the following to see what I saw!