10.16.2013 | by: Meghan

Scenes from Maine // My Place

A couple months ago, I read a beautifully written travel piece in The New York Times magazine. It’s about writer Michael Paterniti’s regular pilgrimages to a small, nondescript village in Spain, initially in search of a cheese, later in search of himself. I urge you to read the entire story. In one of my favorite paragraphs, he writes:

“But something happened to me. Even now, I’m not exactly sure what. I have a friend who once told me about the first time he ever took a ferry to an island off the coast of North Carolina, and how he knew, right there on the ferry — with the salt spray and the light off the ocean — that he’d come back to this same spot every year. He’d come to relive that feeling of leaving his old self behind. That annual renewal, the reacquaintance with the person he felt himself to be on that island, was something he wanted to organize his life around. Similarly, Guzmán instantly and improbably became my place.”

It made me think of Maine, and how we missed our annual summer trip this year. It made me think about how Maine, where I’ve been spending summers since I was a kid, is my place, and its absence felt like a tightening in my chest, like I needed the crisp salty air, the dense evergreens, the craggy rock beaches, the indescribable Maine-ness that makes me feel more, well, like me. We decided to make it happen in the fall. Yes, the water was freezing. But when isn’t it in Maine? Less ice cream, more clam chowder. Less laying in the sun, more snuggling under blankets. There was so much beauty in the silence of the off-season; it was exactly what our newly expanded family needed. We did a lot of hiking through the woods, exploring under rocks, collecting shells, building sandcastles and early morning fires, and taking long, meandering, two-hour walks along the beach. Most days, we saw few people but counted foxes, deer, turkey, porcupine, and crabs among encounters with living creatures. Below, some photos from our quiet week. The red and yellows popping out amid a backdrop of towering evergreen trees and blue sky still makes my heart leap.

22 Comments on “Scenes from Maine // My Place”

  1. and what a beautiful place it is. Wow!

     

  2. Meghan,

    Your photos are absolutely soul-stirring. Your place now has a home in my heart as well! xx

     

  3. Maria and Lisa: Thank you both so much. Soul-stirring means a lot coming from the master soul-stirrer herself.

     

  4. [...] keep coming back to this beautiful post by Meghan of Designtripper describing Maine as ‘her place.’ The picture above is a [...]

     

  5. Thank you, thank you, thank you so much for sharing this. Most especially the fantastic NYT article. Made my day.

     

  6. Regina: I’ve read the article a couple times and its made my day each time, too. Rarely does a travel article actually inspire such a desire to TRAVEL!

     

  7. My husbands family is from Jonesport , ME and we visit every year. Such a very special place to be. This past summer was our daughters first time visiting and she fell in love…
    I know and understand the truly intense love of Maine. There is no place like it.
    Cheers to you.

     

  8. Lovely photos of our home state! Thanks so much for sharing.

     

  9. Loved meeting you for real. Please keep in touch! xox MAV

     

  10. MAV: You can’t get rid of me now. xx

     

  11. this is so beautifully written and your photos capture maine’s rawness, realness, and beauty. we felt so strongly that it was our place too and packed up and moved there in august. what a lovely post:)

    p.s.
    is the ninth picture down from the salt water cafe and market in rockport? love that place!

     

  12. Your photos evoke a rustic and serene emotion, I almost feel nostalgic, even though I’ve never been! It seems like a fabulous place to re-energize and reflect. Thanks!

    Howie

     

  13. Just guessing this is on Penobscot. Looks beautiful.

     

  14. I grew up in Santa Monica, CA and spent my summers in Maine as a child. My parents loved it so much that they moved to Rockport about 8 years ago. My husband and I live in Los Angeles and long to join them in Maine….I can honestly say it is the most magical place I have ever been.

     

  15. These photos are gorgeous! We vacation in Kennebunkport ME each year… i have great memories there and look forward to going back each summer!

     

  16. All this talk of picking up and moving to Maine is making me jealous!

    Molly ruth: Yes, it is Saltwater Farm Cafe. Such an amazing spot.

    Thanks for all the kind comments, everyone.

     

  17. [...] imagery of the Maine coast from Meghan McEwen’s travel blog has us wanting to spend the holidays in the pines. The Trail of Crumbs: A Farmer's Market in Milan [...]

     

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