In search of Rangeley Lake Resort

First Stop Appalachian Trail

Not having much choice I continued on Route 4 looking for someone or someplace  to ask directions to the resort. I blame myself because I didn’t take the time to map out the route first and use OnStar as back-up. I hadn’t gone too far when I saw a sign for the Appalachian Trail.Appalachian Trail sign Pulling into the lot I found a text had come in from my sister. Seeing that reminded me that when on vacation you don’t get lost, you sight see.

My respects to Geraldine Largay

I was still without a cell signal so I checked out my location. On the right side of the road was a trail shelter for hikers. Slowly it dawned on me that this must be the section of the trail where Hiker Geraldine Largay got lost. The search for her and the eventual recovery of her remains were the subject of a couple of episodes of North Woods Law. Her story is very tragic. It especially hit me because she was hiking alone, something I often find myself doing as well.

As I sat thinking about that I remembered one of the things that hindered the search was that there was no cell service. Geraldine couldn’t call for help and the wardens couldn’t “ping” her phone. No sense waiting here then, it’s back on the road..

The Suds and Sizzle

My next stop was at a little laundry and tanning place. The sign said open but no one was around. I must say, it looked far cleaner and well maintained than the laundromats in my area. We could take a lesson. I didn’t linger. I could see the afternoon shadows getting longer.

Dallas Hill

A mile or so after leaving the Suds and Sizzle I spotted an scenic overlook. Up until now there were only glimpses of the lake through the trees. At the overlook was a gorgeous view of Lake Rangeley.rangeley overlook

It reminded me of looking out over Lake George, where I grew up. I also could get a cell signal so immediately called the resort.

Maggie answered and told me to fear not, I was almost there. Continue on the way I was going, I would pass the IGA grocery store and then the Main lodge would be on my left. IGA grocery storeSure enough. It was right there!

I have arrived

Maggie had me checked in in no time. There are so many amenities they will take up another post.

I have a lovely 3 bedroom cabin all my own for the next 7 days.I have a pile of maps and even a list of moose watching locations. This is going to be great!




Spring Has Sprung when Lilacs Bloom

Spring has sprung when Lilacs Bloom

Lilacs are one of my favorite spring flowers. From their beautiful fragrance  to their delicate blooms, Lilacs are the comfort food of the flower world. I’m blessed with a ride to work that passes everything from pruned and pampered lilac bushes to wild road-side shrubs. This time of year they are all covered in purple blooms.

Lilac Sunday

Lilac Sunday at the Arnold Arboretum was canceled because of the rain. Of the many thousands of flowers at the arboretum, only lilacs get their own special day. Most of the lilacs in the Arboretum are located at the edge of Bussey Hill Rd. The Arboretum has 369 lilac plants! If next week is nice maybe I can catch the tail end of the blooming season.

Lilac Symbolism

The lilac story actually goes back to Greek mythology. According to the story Pan was enamored of a nymph named Syringa. Pan chased Syringa into the forest. Syringa wanted to avoid his advances so turned herself into a lilac bush. To Pan’s surprise, he could not find Syringa, but he did find the shrub. A lilac shrub consists of hollow reeds. Pan cut the shrub to create the flute he is so well known for playing.

Lilac Meanings

Lilac meanings vary throughout different cultures and time periods.

  • The Celtics regarded the lilac as “magical” due to their incredibly intoxicating fragrance.
  • During the Victorian Age, the giving of a lilac was meant to be a reminder of an old love. Widows were often seen wearing lilacs during this period.
  • In Russia, holding a sprig of lilac over the newborn would bring wisdom.
  • In the United States, the lilac is the official state flower of New Hampshire and represents the ‘hardy’ nature of its people.

Lilac Symbolism & Colors

  • White lilacs symbolize purity and innocence.
  • Violet lilacs symbolize spirituality.
  • Blue lilacs symbolize happiness and tranquility.
  • Magenta lilacs symbolize love and passion.
  • Lilac, the color for which this flower is named, is a light purple that symbolizes a first love.

Lilac Facts

  • The lilac is the official flower of a couple’s 8th wedding anniversary.
  • Lilacs have one of the shortest bloom times and only flower for three weeks at the beginning of spring.
  • George Washington and Thomas Jefferson  loved lilacs, growing them in their gardens.
  • Lilacs belong to the same family as the olive tree.

Comfort Food of Flowers

Lilacs symbolize home to me. Growing up our driveway was lined with lilacs and there was a huge lilac bush in the middle of the yard. The blooms only burst forth in early spring and in a wink of an eye are gone. For about 3 weeks the air is fragrant each spring. No matter where I am, the scent takes me home in my mind.

Facts and symbolism provided by FTD web site

As We Leave Lafayette Sqaure

Just a couple of tidbits I want to share before we leave Lafayette Square behind and move on.

Regarding the Church, St. John’s Episcopal,

  • Long known as “the Church of the Presidents,” St. John’s Episcopal Church has served virtually as the chapel to the White House for nearly two centuries
  • In the depths of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln would sometimes walk to St. John’s from the White House and settle into a pew at the back.
  • Every person who has held the office of president has attended at least one service at St. John’s, since Madison.
  • Since Franklin D. Roosevelt’s time, St. John’s has offered itself to incoming presidents for a pre-inauguration prayer service.
  • As far back as 1816, records show that a committee was formed to wait on the President of the United States and offer him a pew. James Madison chose pew 54 and insisted on paying the customary annual rental. The next five Presidents in succession–James Monroe, John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren and William Henry Harrison–occupied this pew during their terms of office. Since then, by tradition, pew 54 has been set aside for Presidents of the United States.

A funny Story as to how Blair- Lee House became the preferred abode for visiting dignitaries. With 142 rooms you’d think the White House could find a bedroom for a head of state. Beginning in 1942, the Blair family began leasing the property to the U.S. government for use by visiting dignitaries; the government purchased the property outright the following December. The move was prompted in part by a request from Eleanor Roosevelt, who found the casual familiarity Winston Churchill displayed during his visits to the White House off-putting.On one occasion, Churchill tried to enter Franklin Roosevelt’s private apartments at 3:00 a.m. to wake the president for a conversation.

The last straw was when Eleanor walked in on Churchill in the White House kitchen clad only in his stogie.  According to the story Churchill was moved to Blair House the next day.

Blair House is know known as the World’s Most Exclusive Hotel!


White House, Home of the American People

The official home for the U.S. president was designed by Irish-born architect James Hoban in the 1790s. Rebuilt after a British attack in 1814, the “President’s House” evolved with the personal touches of its residents, and accommodated such technological changes as the installation of electricity. The building underwent major structural changes in the early 1900s under Teddy Roosevelt, who also officially established the “White House” moniker, and again under Harry Truman after WWII. Counting the Oval Office and the Rose Garden among its famous features, it remains the only private residence of a head of state open free of charge to the public.

The White house is small, no Buckingham Palace for the new country of the USA.  According to our tour guide this was because the White House was to represent every man’s home as opposed to “royalty”.

The White House was originally open to the citizen’s of the US. The first fence was not erected until 1803 but that fence was not to prohibit entry to citizens.  To the contrary, Jefferson opened the doors to the White House for citizens to visit, with the exception of when he was sleeping.  The grounds were generally open as if a public park.  That fence and subsequent fences and walls were largely to direct the flow of visitors.

A guard booth was not added until 1835, after an assassination attempt on President Andrew Jackson.

In the 1850s, the gates were open from 8 am until sundown.

Open public access to the grounds during daytime continued until World War II.  During the war, it was prohibited for security reasons.  Those security reasons have not relaxed, since.

Ever wonder why the entrances are refereed to as the east , west, north or south entrances? It’s because we do not want any visiting dignitary to feel slighted by entering through a “back door.”

Abraham Lincoln addressed the nation from the West Portico for the last time before his assassination. John Wilkes Booth and his c0-conspirators were in Lafayette Square when Lincoln made the address. What they heard so angered them that Booth is alleged to say, that will be the last time Lincoln makes a speech from the White House. Originally they only planned to kidnap the President but now incensed , they left  plotting the eventual assassination.

The White House may look small but it holds  142 rooms on six floors with  floor space totaling approximately 55,000 square feet. The “west wing” was added in 1942 and more than doubled the existing space.