Well here I am heading back up north to Maine. Twice in one season! Actually this trip was planned before JR suggested we go to Bar Harbor and Acadia. This trip is a totally “working” vacation. By that I mean I am heading north to take photos that I hope will be good enough to sell.
Twice each year the lighthouse at Cape Neddick is adorned with white lights, outlining the houses and tower. The first event is known as “Christmas in July” and the second is the Annual Lighting of the Nubble at Christmas time in December. When I heard about that I thought WOW…that would be really cool to take pictures of and it will be a lot nicer in July than December with the cold winds blowing off the ocean. You see, I am a wimpy photographer. I wonder if there’d be a market for “Diary of a Wimpy Photographer”? Just joking.
Another iconic lighthouse that I keep hearing about is Pemaquid Lighthouse so I thought I could set up a little trip that would let me take in both locations.
I checked mapquest for locations of each lighthouse and of course, they are nowhere near each other . I decided to compromise by staying in a location mid way between the two…Portland.
A search of motels through Hotels .com snagged me a good deal at the Super 8 in Westbrook, a suburb of Portland. This was all done weeks before I planned to go so the motel was all paid for. I only had to worry about gas, meals and any extras I might want to do.
It seemed like everything that could go wrong did on the morning of my departure. I finally threw my hands in the air and said I’m done, I’m out of here. So what if the kitchen floor didn’t get mopped . It will still be there when I get home. I put all my stuff from my messy desk in a pile, tossed some treats to the cats and ran before I got side tracked with something more that screamed for my attention.
As I went out the door I realized I didn’t have the power cord for my laptop and the battery was dead…see what I mean? The power cord was at the office in Plymouth so I decided to detour to the office and then head up RT 3 through Boston to pick up RT 95 N. On the way I would stop at Ritz Camera in Hingham (It’s right off one of the exits on RT 3) and pick up some pictures I’d ordered so I wouldn’t have to stop there when I came home.
Well the power cord was quick enough. I got in and out with minimal explanation and in less than 10 minutes. Next stop Ritz Camera.
Now you have to understand that I love the Ritz Camera Store in Hingham. I think every one of the people who work there are great and I recommend them every chance I get. I can see huge improvements in my pictures with their guidance and support so I am not being critical when I tell you what happened next. I share this only as an example of how my day was going.
First I had a terrible time finding a parking spot. The store is in a mall but it felt like the whole mall was slammed. When I got into the store it was wall to wall with people. All of the picture kiosks were taken and every associate was helping customers. They all waved but they are used to me “hanging out” so there was no urgency on their part to get to me. Besides , I should wait my turn. Finally one person broke free long enough to ask me if I wanted help. While they were looking for the pictures I ordered another associate called out that they weren’t ready. Could I wait an hour? They were really backed up!
I told them no I was leaving for Maine and I’d get them on the way back. Well now everyone wanted to know where in Maine, what pictures did I plan to take and so on. I finally got out and back on the road. The pictures will be waiting for me on my return but guess what…a fender bender had traffic at a stand- still and I wasn’t even in Boston!
Eventually I got through the traffic jam and maybe since traffic was so slow south of the city, it made for pretty clear sailing through Boston proper. I made good time the rest of the way arriving in Portland about an hour after I planned, 3pm instead of 2pm. Not bad considering.
The Super 8 was right off the highway. Perfect! The desk clerk was really nice and friendly. The motel was undergoing some renovation but they still had a pool, offered a continental breakfast and had fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies right there when I came in! Fresh coffee was brewing all day.
The room was nice too. It was fairly large with a king sized bed right at the end of the hall so it was pretty quiet. Only one other room near me.
I picked up some maps of the area tossed my suitcase down, grabbed the camera and headed out to explore a little and find someplace for dinner. My “working” vacation was officially underway.