From Salem, I headed farther north into Maine. I was definitely excited about Maine because I was hoping to see a moose. All I wanted was to see a moose. I was even prepped for it, by the helpful Maine DOT. There were signs literally as soon as you crossed over the state line. MOOSE XING : Next 10 miles. Then they got lazy and most places had a sign stating just…MOOSE. Now, before the flamingo reigned supreme, the moose was THE animal. They are tall, and goofy, and majestic, and awkward. I can relate to a lot of that. They are still a close second. So I had high hopes for Maine. I started scanning the woods even before the first sign.
The first couple days I was going to camp in Freeport…but it had started to get cold. I mean, let’s not get crazy. I cancelled my tent site for a cute little cabin in the woods. Did I mention it was also raining? Yeah, as soon as I got into the cabin I turned the heat setting on tropical. I slept in the next morning to rain on the metal roof. Lovely! I then decided to visit downtown Freeport and get some much needed shopping in. I felt obligated to check out the LL Bean store. So I did that. Check! I did end up getting a water-resistant pair of pants. Little did I know how handy they would be.
No moose sightings.
After my couple of days in the cabin in the woods (no horror film happenings, fortunately), I headed towards Bar Harbor, and Acadia National Park. I was happy to see at least a few of the fall colors were still around, despite my harped-upon procrastination. As the season was winding down, the town was either closed or closing. That actually didn’t occur to me…so I squeaked by on that one. I stayed in a regular Hampton Inn that was anything but regular. I was super surprised how nice it was. Since they had so much room as they were about to close and hardly anyone was there, I actually got upgraded to a harbor view suite. I have to say that was quite nice!
I walked around downtown Bar Harbor when I first arrived, and on the recommendation of the lovely shop owners of A Little Mad (love the name), went to eat at the Side Street Café. Fortunately for me, it was the last day they were open as they were closing the next. A little plug here for their lobster mac and cheese and their blueberry pie. I know I haven’t mentioned food much, but this was amazing. Highly recommend should any of you lovely readers ever make it.
The next day I was looking forward to exploring Acadia National Park. After the last couple days, the sun decided to come out so it turned out to be a lovely day in the park. Plus, for all you lazy explorers, when it’s cold you can do a lot of this park from your car! I know that’s cheating. I know. Just. I know. See below for lovely documentation. From the car and my own two feet.
The Loop Road takes you on a pretty good tour of the park, and you can drive to the top of Cadillac Mountain. I mean, I think you can hike too…but…
Towards the start of my loop drive, I saw this pretty little path through the woods but of course someone was behind me and I couldn’t stop for a pic. So since I’m also stubborn, I circled back until I found it again. Totally worth it. I could see myself living down a road such as this.
After finding my pretty little path, it was definitely time for dinner. Another food recommendation for Blaze Pizza. It was seriously the best pizza I’ve ever had. And trust me, I’ve had some pizza in my life. Ha!
Still no moose.
The next day was Halloween and I got back on the road again heading to Vermont through New Hampshire and saw the first snow of the trip. In October. I mean, I’m southern. We don’t see snow until January/February…maybe. So of course I was that person pulling over to take a pic to send to folks back home. Look guys! Snow! I mean it’s no moose, but it’s got it’s own certain something. As long as there’s not too much. And it goes away the next day. Spoken like a true southerner.
No moose in New Hampshire either.
I guess I should mention at this point I was heading to Vermont to stay at the Trapp Family Lodge. Yes, that Trapp Family where the hills are alive. I was nerding out hard. Before heading up to the lodge, I went through a little town and all the kids were out on the streets trick or treating. Yeah, I made that into a verb. Most of their parents were dressed up as well and everyone just looked like they were having the best time. It was seriously like something out of a Hallmark movie, it was that bucolic.
I arrived at the Lodge and the hostess recommended their newly opened Bierhall for dinner. I had passed it coming up the mountain, so I knew it wasn’t far. I reasoned that if I went ahead and checked it out I wouldn’t have to move the car the next day. Don’t get me wrong, I actually do love driving. But it’s nice to let both the Subie and I rest sometimes. Yes, I just said to rest my car. She’s been a trouper.
I was seated in their sunroom of sorts and I ordered their Johannes-burger. This was aptly named after Maria’s youngest son, who now runs the Lodge. As I’m finishing up, they start setting up the next table for a larger group. My introvert self was grateful that I was almost done so I can escape before the big group gets in and gets loud. The group starts coming in…and there’s a tall, distinguished-looking fellow with them that sets my spidey senses tingling. I keep my ears open, but not so obvious so I’m not that person. He starts chatting with another gentleman in his group, using words like “we just opened the Bierhall” “it’s been going well” etc. Covert glances to the side. A bit of hyperventilating. I’m 99% sure I know who it is. I wrap up my dinner and head to the front to purchase a pint glass and ask them if it was indeed Johannes next to me. Bazinga! I was right! I officially nerded out 100%. I mean, what are the odds?
Never saw my moose. But in some ways, that was better than a moose. It was like a unicorn instead. (I’m sure he’d appreciate being compared to a moose)
Song of the Day: A Few of My Favorite Things (you had to see that one coming)