My sister came out from Colorado to visit last week. It's amazing how much you take for granted when you live in a place. We switched into tourist mode and took full advantage of summer in Maine, and along the way I experienced many firsts:
--First glimpse of the dorsal fin of a whale (my sister, who instigated the whale watch didn't see it at all, nor did E and Z who were asleep by then; C and M, who were in the front of the boat because M was seasick, were the first to spy its blow and saw it surface several times).
--First time I've seen Pemaquid beach look like the Jersey shore, with an extreme high tide shrinking the space between dunes and waves to a dozen feet or so, and a full contingent of swimmers, boogie borders and sunbathers crammed in the strip of dry sand.
--First speeding ticket (big one...though I don't even believe that my car is even capable of going that fast).
--First time using my Better World Club roadside assistance for my first time having two flat tires at once (less than an hour after the speeding ticket, mind you).
--First time sharing an island with the President.
--First hikes on two mountains (Acadia and Saint Saveur) due to my carless college days focus on the front side of the island. Also first time I felt like I was having a stroke while hiking. Dear lord am I out of shape!
--First time at Echo Lake Beach (again with the front versus back side of the Island).
--First time around Jordan Pond and first eating of popovers at Jordan Pond House (waaay too poor for that kind of indulgence in my Island days).
--First time driving up Cadillac Mountain (once I did ride up in a van, for a field trip, and hiked down; otherwise it was all either hiking or biking...and very high and mighty over those who would drive).
--First time attending a movie at the Maine International Film Festival. We saw Howl, about Allen Ginsberg and the trial over his controversial book of the same name. Very good. Highly recommend.
There were some run-of-the-mill things in there too--napping at Fort Williams Park (home of Portland Head Light) until a thunderstorm came in; playing in the huge waves at Reid State Park in the rain; lounging at the lake; picking raspberries and making jam; hiking to Bass Falls (wow that hike is a lot shorter with two five-year-olds than it was with two three-, or two- or one-year-olds!).
It was a lot of fun, but now I need a month-long nap (as I'm sure does my sister, who missed the connection on her red-eye flight, spent the night in the airport and had to work the next day).