Forgot your password?

We just sent you an email, containing instructions for how to reset your password.

Sign in

  • In the time before now we used to spend alot of energy avoiding what we called The Other, those that gave Maine it's license plate tag: Vacationland. Actually the tourist board came up with that name to suck in more of The Other. The Other brings $$$ for the coffers. Ok - you say but....

    Let me back up. We left Pennsylvania to get away from the invasion of the McMansion suburbs. Before that I fled inner city Philadelphia for the same reason. Partly it was about the cost of housing caused by gentrification . Partly it was the noise and lack of nature. But viscerally It bothered me to watch the Young Professionals moved into cute little Revolutionary War row houses and gut the very soul of a neighborhood by putting broken glass all around the top of the walls of their backyards and installing elaborate alarm systems to keep the Undesirables. They got vicious dogs. None of that actually stopped Unsavories from vandalizing. It just fanned the flames, made the stakes higher. Next they started getting houses condemned and torn down. And when they could not stem the tide of poverty and destruction, they picked up and left for the safety of the suburbs after jacking up the price of housing so the Poor Folk that had lived there no longer could. They destroyed a neighborhood, marginal as it was, and they left having contributed nothing.

    So when we moved to Maine we took vacations on the edge. We avoided the vacation spots, partly because of cost but eventually because we got to know the place better away from the drama and noise. Money was a limiter but it also was an instigator. We went a hour further north in Baxter, used the North Entrance and missed the excitement of through hikers heading for the summit and campgrounds full of campers decked out for the camping experience and comparing their captures. Sometimes I wonder if we missed out on a certain kind of camraderie doing that but I glad for what it has taught me, the kind of stories and connections we found: the mama bear with her cubs in a high blueberry barren, the ranger whose young family has come to visit as he is gone from their home down state all summer. All this feels real to me and I am grateful.
    • Share

    Connected stories:


Collections let you gather your favorite stories into shareable groups.

To collect stories, please become a Citizen.

    Copy and paste this embed code into your web page:

    px wide
    px tall
    Send this story to a friend:
    Would you like to send another?

      To retell stories, please .

        Sprouting stories lets you respond with a story of your own — like telling stories ’round a campfire.

        To sprout stories, please .

            Better browser, please.

            To view Cowbird, please use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, or Internet Explorer.