A Different Mood on these Streets- Augusta, Maine

Augusta, Maine.
An interesting place to be sure, and somewhere I almost skipped completely.
After leaving Belfast, Maine heading towards the mountains of New Hampshire just over the border, me and Kat were listening to whatever music was coming up through Sally’s rather fantastic sound system (Sally of course, being our rented Mustang. You can’t say we don’t have a sense of humour) and thinking about where to stop for lunch, when we came upon a bridge crossing murky waters. And just over that bridge, we caught a glimpse of colourful buildings, a castle-type looking thing, and somewhat deserted streets. Looking at each other, I remember I widened my eyes like a madman and ignoring the pleas of our GPS to “continue left- make a U-turn- take the next right-” we headed down a slope into the middle of what I now assume is the historic part of Maine’s capital.

Given the fact that it was early on a Sunday morning, the skies looked ready to crash rain down on everything, and maybe just a dash of good fortune, the streets were completely deserted. Not a single soul in sight. At first it caught us up in a mood of adventure and exploration, had us running around the streets, peering into shop windows and with me snapping photos every few feet but… that feeling slowly deteriorated into a paranoid sense of being in some kind of Zombie Apocalypse type situation after still not seeing any people around. We jogged back to Sally and locked our doors, huddled in our supposed safety. There was still a spirit of adventure though, and with Sally playings some zombie-fears-battling-music we headed deeper into the streets, catching glimpses of that murky river, and also of actual, living, inhabitants. Which was slightly disappointing, given the potential of zombies of course, but we pressed on. We actually came upon a great place to make a last stand, a historic fort, but…thats a post for later.

~m

And We Went up into the Woods- Moose Point State Park, Maine

Look out, there. MaineAfter running around exploring the rocky coastline of Maine’s Moose Point State Park me and Kat headed down one of the trails leading into the woods. The smell of ocean and seaweed faded into the crispness of forest and damp leaves, our muffled footsteps taking us further into the quiet.

Moose Point State ParkThese Maine Trees
A little Maine ForestThe trees here smell like heaven Maine Woods

There were signs of people here, a white picket fence, a bench positioned towards trees, but in the time we spent there, we didn’t see a single person or hear anything besides the chirping of birds and the patter of raindrops on leaves.A fence here, Maine the red moss here Tree Branches at home Kat Climbs a Tree, in A dress no less Big Spruce Trail, Maine An overlook, and Kat

The green here was brilliant, illuminated against the shadows like sign posts to come closer, explore further. And we did. Kat made to climb trees even while in a dress and I ran behind her, my camera bumping against my hip, trying to capture the moments of being there, while enjoying the feeling of wild freedom, no responsibilities and clean air in our lungs. Its simple here A carpet of green Moss and dark Moose Trail Kat touches the green

Even though just a few hours later we would be in the mountains of New Hampshire, daring mortality with our escapades on slippery rocks down fast rivers, the quiet and calm in these Maine woods would remain a favorite memory for that day.

~m

Here, At the Edge of the Ocean- Moose Point State Park, Maine

Marsh and red moss After departing from the quiet of Seasport me and Kat were headed on our way towards the main center of Belfast, when we saw a sign for a place called Moose Point State Park and with just a quick look at each other we decided hey, lets check it out. The parking area was deserted when we pulled in, and we were almost giddy with the idea of having this whole area to ourselves, to run around like children, slipping on rocks, muddying our hands, and breathing in the salty area like it was a cure to everything.Take the steps down to the oceanMaine Palette Shades of Green in MaineKat and the RocksThese little pockets of color Give me Shades of Silence and GreenMaine Rocky CoastlineKat up the StairsWe explored the coastline first, before venturing into the trails that lead into the dark of the woods.  And while the special quiet and darkness of the woods was a beauty of it’s own kind,the coastline, with it’s slightly treacherous rocky ground and it’s patient gentle waves, it’s what I keep coming back to as one of my favorite parts of Maine.

I like your kind of quiet, Maine A momument to silence right now Marsh and red moss Kat and the Maine coastlinerocky shoresIt was a unique and hard gorgeousness that existed that morning underneath the grey clouds. Colors stood in stark contrast and yet somehow still in harmony with the land and sky. I can imagine that summertime here would be an example in sunny beach beauty, but I cherished the almost grim weather we experienced in solitude here.

~m

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bits of Advice When On A Roadtrip- East Coast Edition

After a long nights drive Road tripping is different for everyone, I get that.  Some people like to plan things out from top to botton, lunches-bathroom breaks-gas stops-whathaveyous and some people just get in the car and go. Theres the people who need to have a pre approved and vetted playlist at the ready, and then theres the people who switch on the radio and just pick a station to listen to. Some people don’t even listen to music (audio books, news, russian dissertations on eroding social classes, ect ). But when you’re taking a roadtrip, no matter what size, to places you’ve never been to before, there’s a number of general rules/niceties that can apply to everyone. Especially if you’re going with someone you’ve never traveled with before, or this is your first roadtrip.

Sea Scape Motel and CottagesCozy Kitchen place

Always book in advance if you’re going to be making more than 2 hours drive to the destination of the night. It’s always great to have things booked when you set off, instead of trying to do it on the way, or heavens, in the car itself. I know, I know, wheres the adventure, the spontaneity! Mate, that feeling of epic adventure will fade when your dead on your feet and trying to navigate the insanity that is foggy weather or crowded roads that cows frequent.

Pack your essentials! the tired travelers last minute meal

Pack your essentials in plastic ziplock bags (this goes for both guys and gals btw) or travel bags if you’re fancy like that, especially if you’re traveling with someone else and you’ll be sharing a room with one bathroom. Don’t be that person who takes up all the counter space with their grooming stuff. Both me and Kat were excellent at this and it’s one of the reason we traveled so well together. Secondly, no matter how hard you try, you’re not always going to be able to eat healthy or even eat what is considered real food. It’s a road trip, these things happen. Don’t stress about it, feed yourself with what you can and make up for it later by not getting that extra helping of fries at that one greasy spoon diner…. though really, who am I kidding, I always get that extra helping. Friiiies. Keep hydrated always though, don’t just live off coffee.
Our home away from Home in Maine Sally and the cottage Two little chairs side by side little cottages in Maine

When you can, and usually you can, try to pick places to stay that are run by locals. Not only are they at times less expensive than chains, they are usually brimming with charm, unique touches here and there, and even if the owner gets a bit peeved at you for arriving almost at closing time because you got lost in the fog and ended up in some weird island thing in the middle of the bay, they’re usually fantastic for tips about the area. We stayed at Seascape Motel and Cottages in Belfast when we went to Maine, and it was hands down the best place we stayed at during the whole trip, even including our fantastic boutique hotel in NYC.  We got a huge cottage to ourselves, with it’s own little parking spot, cozy kitchen, and you can bet we’re going to go back one day and spend a whole week there.
Kat working on her fantastic travel journal Morning light in MaineTis green here in Maine Stay up late, wake up early. Or, stay up as late as you need to, to update blogs and friends, write in your journal about the epic things you did, and try and wake up as early as you can manage. A normal sleeping schedule is not a thing that happens on roadtrips, sometimes you’ll get a great nights rest and others you’ll be running on coffee fumes. Let it happen, don’t get worked up about not getting enough sleep, you can get rest when you’re back home, for now just enjoy your time on the road yeah? Learn to be at least a little bit of a morning person, even before coffee.

Also, don’t unpack ALL your bags when you settle in for the night, even if you’re going to be staying for a few days. You don’t need everything you packed every day, do you? Re-packing is a time stealer, pack efficiently with the clothes you’ll need  to change the most (like underwear, sleepwear, shirts) in one bag, and the other clothes (like trousers, jeans, skirts and dresses) in the one with the rest of your things.
Kat and SallyAnd the last bit of advice? If you’re going to travel with someone, make sure it’s someone who is super awesome, wants to see and experience around the same things you do, doesn’t mind that you want to photograph literally everything, christens your rental car Sally and in general is an amazing human being that you can be around 24 hours a day with, in an enclosed space for long periods of time, because in the end, your journey is more than half of the experience, not the destination.

~m

 

Fantastic Pizza and the Bluest Ocean- Gloucester, MA

Coastline views in Gloucester I’ve finally gotten around to editing and going through my photos of the rest of the May trip I took with my (fantastic super awesome) friend Kat, or at least the ones taken after we left New York, headed towards Boston and after that, everywhere. (Really, our trip took us through Maine- New Hampshire- Vermont- Connecticut – Rhode Island and back to Boston for the final 2 days )Good God, Sally We made it into Boston early in the morning after leaving on a bus from Port Authority, and headed into the center of Boston to pick up the rental car, which…. ended up being MUCH different than what we were expecting. I don’t know if things are just wildly different in Massachusetts where a Ford Mustang is considered a regular kind of car, but as someone who has never driven that kind of beauty before, you can be assured it made the next 5 days a very interesting experience…. especially considering all the out of the way spots we visited, not to mention taking this beast up into the mountains. But thats for later! Poseidons Pizza Poseidons Pizza in Gloucester MA Poseidons Pizza Pepperoni and Mushroom pizza in Gloucester Close up Our first stop after leaving Boston (can I just say, what the fudge, seriously….even when trying to leave Boston the traffic was just insanity. As much as I adore Boston….no. Just no.)  was somewhere that looked interesting when viewed on the map, Gloucester. Situated in the north part of the Massachusetts coastline, it was the perfect stop before diving into the 2 hour drive to our stay for the night, Belfast Maine. The first thing we did after parking in Stage Fort Park, near their visitors center, was go find food. And while I can’t say we looked far and wide for places to eat at, I will say that stumbling into a pizza place called Poseidon’s, from it’s chill atmosphere, down to earth service and freakin’ amazing food, it was perfection. After that me and Kat enjoyed a walk along the coast back towards the park, marveling at the incredible blue skies.Gloucester MA ocean views a lovely time in Massachusetts In Goucester MA quiet town, Gloucester Coastline views in Gloucester

Back at Stage Fort park we peeked in at the visitors center (which was unfortunately already closed, ah well ) and just enjoyed the smell of ocean with the feel of warm sun on our skins.  Stage Fort Park in MA City of Gloucester Visitors Center Exploring in Gloucester MADefinitely a great place to stop for rest, food and coffee (we ended up at a Dunkin Donuts….which would kinda prove a trend for the rest of the trip actually) and it was the perfect jumping off point for the rest off our days on the road.

~m