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Entry date: 1-26-2022 - Rangeley in October - Letters to My Friends

Dear Friends,

Part two of the October trip to Maine with Rick….

So, we had a few days to enjoy Rangeley, Maine, and our first full day there was interesting to say the least. Rick got to see the house and the surrounding area in the daylight, and I think he was as impressed as I was the first time I went there. The backyard is beautiful, and it makes time slow down when you stare at it, I swear.

We had a funeral, unfortunately, to attend as our cousin Martha had passed away after a long and very difficult battle with multiple illnesses and Rick decided to ride down with us to Mexico, Maine where the funeral was held. It was a cold, wet, gray kind of day in Maine and the fall colors will still very abundant. Bittersweet, for sure.

Rick ended up taking Bailey for a walk because she was not having anything to do with sitting in the car during the funeral. It was nice to see some family that we don’t get to see often, and it was a wonderful tribute to Martha. Her best friend and our family friend, Janine, sang a beautiful song and everyone had a little fellowship to celebrate her transition.

After the funeral, we headed out to see some land that Rhondi and were interested in on the outskirts of Worthley Pond. This was also a good way to show Rick some more of Maine and the places we like to spend time when we are there. Worthley Pond is really beautiful spot about 20 minutes from Rumford, Maine and our Martha and her husband, Hal, have a place there. I will definitely miss having barbecues there with Martha. I hope we can continue the tradition without her, but she will be sorely missed.

The land was pretty, for sure, but didn’t end up investing in it. We took a nice walk, though, but cut it short because hunting season was in full effect up there and we didn’t have anything orange on to protect us. We got back in the car and decided to head into Farmington to see Will the brewery he worked at and get a few supplies.

It was a fun drive to Farmington as we got turned around a bit, thanks to google maps, and ended up seeing some houses and such that we had never seen before. When we got to Farmington, we bought some fresh halibut at one of the fish trucks and got some really good food from another truck that was parked behind an ice cream shop. Will told us where to find the truck, so we brought him some dumplings and had our food at the small brewery where he worked.

We enjoyed a few beers and headed back to Rangeley where we made some food and had a good time with the rest of our day and night.

On Sunday, we just cruised around town a bit, did a little shopping, and had a mellow time. It was nice to have down time with some family back there and show Rick the town. We hit all the good spots and even went on a nice walk with Cousin Ellen to see another pond near town. We also sampled quite a bit of New England craft beer and got a nice buzz on while we hung out at the house. Cousin Ned made some food for us, and we lived it up pretty well.

The following day was my birthday. Rhondi had to work so Rick and I went golfing at a nine-hole course near the ski area known as Saddleback. The course was downhill from the slopes but built on the side of the mountain range so you kind of played your way down hill for a few holes and then started to make your way back up.

We decided it was the setting for an unwritten Stephen King story about a golf course that would give you back the golf balls you lost as long as you were willing to look in all the strangest places. We kept losing balls but ended up finding even more than we lost, I think. The wind was keeping things nice and cold, and it was odd to play golf wearing so many layers of clothing. That’s never necessary here in the desert.

It was a fun, challenging course. Lots of trees, as you can imagine, and some very interesting pin placement, too. I look forward to playing the course again this summer. Hopefully I can get Liam out there or maybe Rhondi. We’ll see. Rick and I had a blast, though, and decided it would be fun to take a golf trip some day to just play the oddball courses like this one that are all over the country.

We celebrated my big day with a good dinner and some more beers. Will came up for dinner and brought some tasty stouts to try and we had some celebratory scotch, too. I’m pretty sure that Rick and I both passed out on the couch.

The last day we had in Maine we explored a bit more and drove town to the Lewiston/Auburn area to pick up Rhondi’s new kayak that she scored while we were there. It is a beautiful kayak and Rhondi wanted us to drive it back to Arizona, but I was not comfortable with that, and she finally decided to agree to disagree but relented on me bringing the kayak back. It would have made the drive very difficult.

It was rainy and cold and I soaked up as much of Maine as I could knowing we would have to head out the next day to drive back to Phoenix. We packed up the car and figured out how much room we would have to spare, which was not a lot, and got ready for the next day. I realized, too, that Maine is exactly where I want to spend as much time as possible before I die. Rangeley is magical, at least to me, and while the winters are harsh, I could easily turn into a snowbird.

Part three is next…. the drive back.

See you tomorrow.

no playlist yet...maybe some day. But I recommend listening to Ray Charles.

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