Wednesday, June 16, 2004

What I Learned About Maine

I like it there. I kept thinking what a nice place it would be to live - on the coast, of course. I had to force myself to think about what it would be like full of tourists in July or full of ice and snow in October through March.

The people are really nice. Granted, half the people we encountered were hotel or restaurant employees looking for a tip. Still, they were nicer than many similar tip-seekers I've encountered elsewhere. And all the non-tip-seekers were friendly and helpful too.

Maine has a statewide prohibition of smoking in bars and restaurants.

They also have many local breweries. I sampled a different beer with almost every dinner and they were good.

I read an article in one of the Maine newspapers that was about Maine growing (ha. ha) obesity problem. Well, here's a clue: when getting directions from Bar Harbor to Kennebunk, it was, "take route 3 down here. you'll see a McDonald's and a Dunkin Doughnuts. That's where you turn on route 122, Then go 3 miles and you'll see Irving's gas and a Dunkin Donuts. You get on route 1 there. Then go to where the McDonald's and Dunkin Donuts are at route ----". I'm not making that up. Dunkin Donuts outnumbers McDonald's 3 to 2. they are everywhere. The mainers have had lobster and butter for eons. If obesity is a new problem, I think the doughnut's are doing them in.

When driving, people in Maine tend to go at or below the speed limit. There are many roads with one lane each way and you just get behind someone and go as slow as they decide. With two lanes each way, people will drive side-by-side, at or below the speed limit, without fear or shame. On the turnpike, with three lanes, the at-or-belows all get in the middle lane while everyone else goes around on the left or right. I think the at-or-belows are weighed down by doughnuts.

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