Updated: Apr 26, 2019
Man, northern Maine is a cold, unforgiving place. Look at this photo taken in late February near the town where I spent most of my youth. The snowbanks are taller than me. You can’t go for a run. You can’t swim or bike or barbecue or dash to the store or visit a grave. Shit. The place is unforgiving.
It’s cool, though. The winters are beautiful, peaceful, and sparse. Personally, I think Maine winters can bring out the best in people. They did when I lived there. People still did their best to go about their business, but they had to respect December through February. If you respected those months and you sought to understand those months, life would work. If you didn’t, the cold months would end up being harsh, untamed, and intolerable.
As such, it was easy to spot people who never learned to live in the winter. Some were natives and some were transplants. Instead of accepting and working with the cold, they fought it. They didn’t ski or build fires. Instead, they spent Thanksgiving through St. Patrick’s day itemizing their contempt. I still wonder why they didn’t move…there are plenty of warmer places.
It’s funny to think that there is a lot of good in between all the cold and unforgiving. I recommend checking out northern Maine in the winter. The place has inspired me to write a handful of songs. I wonder what it could do for you.