The luxury of just being a consumer with cash and carry, or swipe the plastic thinking is not how life in a small Maine town rolls.
Take take take, pay pay pay reaching in your wallet or purse to buy your way through day to day life is not the procedure. Not a case of just bark out an order. Then get everything possible delivered up chop chop quick for a full, complete selection off the menu of goods and services. Not happening that way. Not our day to day Maine experience.
We go without many things store bought in Maine.
That we initially think we want, are told we better buy before midnight tonight through high powered advertising. Gotta have, can’t live without but then rationalize we don’t really need for happiness, joy, contentment. To live with out the debt that follows. After the thrill is gone, when the hankering to gotta have it spell wears off. Until something else sparkling, new, flashy comes into the area of the corner of your eye. Spending happens slower in Maine. Better impulse control. Lots of bartering, exchanging DIY skills, not stacks of green dead presidents back and forth in Maine.
In rural Maine towns, which most are, you don’t get “fed” like a consumer that is served. It’s like you and I are the church worship experience. The pot luck covered dish delivered to the “here is the steeple, open up and see all the people”. Not just going, attending a Maine church to have trained professionals do all the leg work. We don’t just sit, act spiritual, listen, sing a few hymns, recite a couple prayers and leave. To be like bumps on a log. Repeat the process seven days later. We speak up, reach out, give praise and cause wide open, two way worship experiences everyday. Spending a lot of time on our knees in prayer in our spiritual gardens.
In a city, it is a luxury to live out in the suburbs.
In a small town where there are fewer secrets. Where people have time for people. In a place with a handful of stoplights if any exist there at all. Cleaner air, bluer skies, brighter stars happen in a small Maine town. Because all the types of pollution are less, missing, not out of control generated. Sounds crude, primitive but no people, no pollution, no problems. Simple living. No stranglehold of permitting, licensing, regulations either.
With wall to wall people in a city, less folks dare to make eye contact. You quickly learn to avoid confrontations. Are not so trusting, develop a beware and don’t stare, gawk, engage act of survival. Appear disinterested, just blend in to the crowd, swell of noise and smells. Push, shove, herd shoulder to shoulder like slow moving cattle traffic. If you know what’s good for you fella.
Just take what you need, get what you came to shop for in a product or service in the big apple.
And high tail it back to the place called home. Where in a city the place you lay your head down, raise your kids is secured by bars on the windows. A dead bolt, standard lock and a chain for good measure on all the doors. Belt and suspenders thinking. And yes you carry a taser, a concealed weapon. Avoid certain areas of the city no matter what time of day or night. People are way friendlier in a small Maine town because they can be.
There are smaller businesses, locally owned in Maine towns because there are just not enough consumers to keep large ones afloat. Out of the red and making a healthy enough bottom line profit for the out of state corporate headquarters bean counters.
Small Maine family run businesses can weather economic storms.
Way more resilient and creative to hold costs down. Able to survive because it’s just the family working more than forty hour weeks. Not a bunch of employees with worker’s compensation, special insurances, restrictive union demands to do this, this and oh yeah that too.
Small Maine town business owners don’t whine, complain we always used to do it this way. They adjust, quickly adapt because they have to. Not flush with money. More skin in the game. The stakes more real. Odds stacked against them if they develop slack, waste. Or a “well, that’s good enough” attitude. Going above and beyond like a trim, toned athlete in training. Making work a survival sport is the norm. Cause it is in a small Maine town where your profit is all in your expenses. You can not just raise prices and keep the doors open, customer loyalty to continue.
David is way more efficient, cross trained, humble and resourceful then Goliath.
To quickly adapt to new situations, consider all the variables and what ifs. Then do what he has to do with what he has to work with and his only weapon, a sling shot to survive. To do the impossible, make a do or die difference for the greater good of his home town and family. You and I are the “they” in a small Maine town too. Not blaming past mistakes in town affairs on folks six feet under, buried a half mile out of town high on a hill. We all do the best we can with what we know, what we have, and live in the today. Not decades ago, not too far in the future. The here and now focus that matters most is where today’s life takes place.
Small Maine businesses offer a higher degree of personal service. They are your neighbors. The folks you sit two pews away from in church. Coached a little league team, shared a dug out bench and water cooler. And pretty much attend all the same school and sport functions. Because each family has kids the same age.
The stork made synchronized multiple flight drops.
The children in a Maine family part of a classic case of connecting the dots. Progressing up through the ranks, in the same zig zag up the halls in elementary right up through to high school graduation. And knowing their classmates in a small sized, more personal, hands on education.
Small Maine towns, you don’t just live there. You are the small Maine town and the community would miss you if you were gone. The small calm just a puddle pond ripples with anything you do good or bad. Your reputation is everything. You can make a difference and are needed to step up, pitch in, help out. And unlike a city, large sprawling urban concrete jungle of parking garages, cloverleaf exchanges and glass towers, over paid sports teams, your voice is not drowned out in a small Maine town.
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