For the entire month of July, this will be my home.
This will be my view. It's called Duck Cove Cottage and it sits on Hobbs Pond in Hope, Maine, about an 8 minute drive from Camden and the Atlantic Ocean. If Hobbs Pond were in Virginia it would be called a magnificent lake. But in Maine it is dwarfed by hundreds of lakes much bigger and more grand, so pond it is. We will take rental possession of this beauty on July 2nd and leave on the 30th.
We have never done anything like this before. Sure, we have taken our share of vacations, many more than most people, I will admit. But, we have never gone away for an entire month before. It has taken a lot of planning and advance work. My profession doesn't really allow a complete hiatus, so my laptop and cell phone will be with me in case of some geo-political/financial market meltdown.
Barring Armageddon though, professional concerns will rank approximately 16th on my priorities list.
It won't be easy, pulling this off. Ok, the hardest part is over since I've already paid the rent. But, we have never packed for a month before, have you? And, transporting Miss Lucy to Maine is going to be something like Dante's nine circles of hell. It will involve one pet friendly hotel stay in Conneticut, in case you're wondering. The drive takes 13 hours, which is like six months in dog years. Actually Lucy is very much the wild card of this adventure. Will her famous neurosis go to death-com five in
a new, strange house, or will she, like everyone else, have herself transformed by Maine? Will living here chill her out?
I can already tell what many of you are thinking...What the heck would you do in Maine for an entire month?? The answer is a combination of anything we want, and whatever seems right. The best part of being in Maine is simply...being. The lake has a magnet in it. You swim in it, fish from it, kayak on it. But you also gaze at it, and listen to it. And if fresh water ever starts to annoy you, you get in the car and drive into Camden and eat a lobster and take in a lungful of salty sea air.
Mostly, you stay outside all day. Being outside so much changes you, recalibrates your mind and gives you a ravenous appetite which gets rewarded with amazing food cooked up on grills...again outside. Then, after dinner, you walk down to the edge of the lake, light a fire and sit around it, hypnotized.
We will have guests. At some point Kaitlin and Jon will be with us, and Patrick and Sarah, hopefully on the same week. Other family will come on other weeks. Maybe we will have a week by ourselves, maybe not. This is the sort of place that you want to share.
So, we will grind through all of the packing drama, and the hellish journey up I-95. We will arrange for house sitters and assure the timely cutting of grass here in Short Pump. But we will leave the 95 degree days and the suffocating humidity behind and enjoy four weeks of Maine..." the way life ought to be."