You stop in for a cup of Joe at the local corner store and this just in.
Wayne Quint, a local retired Maine educator, coach, driver’s ed instructor had a lawnmower fire. I know, this is serious. Mulching leaves from last fall and something goes horribly wrong. A spark, or dried debris from bone dry conditions and high fire warning levels makes it a hot story. Leaves too close to a sizzling high temperature exhaust pipe and here we go.
Cries for help heard, Tana McNutt, Tony Hart running to the rescue at Drews Lake. Get the blazing, ailing grass mowing rider away from the wooded property line with a big here we go heave ho. And start bailing water with a pail out of the lake to douse, control the blaze. Three tires burn off quickly, creating a smoke screen and whoa.
There’s your local headline for the day. Old Craftsman mower the group thinks was the brand is toast. Crispy, burnt and the source of the short term excitement. As Wayne goes off to shop for a new rider. Maybe a deal from the closing Maine Potato Grower’s line of Cub Cadets that will be marked way down. To move them out scout. Make them each and every one a blue light special shoppers.
That’s it? No drive by shootings, robberies, gang retaliation for some form of retribution, revenge news to discuss this morning? Sorry.
You are in Maine, the fourth lowest crime state and where I live, chainsaw that statistic that’s pretty impressive right in half again. Less people, more pride and respect and the news gets pretty tame compared to other areas. And how about those Red Sox that found out that better hitting trumps pitching in their loss last night. And thank goodness Emma had her baby, 9 pounds, 7 ounces is one big bouncing new born. And says like many new Moms that’s it. All she wrote. No more storks flying over at her house going to be allowed. Too bumpy a ride with this last one.
Oh, there are other local by lines to report. Danny Emerson paddled his boat up into the fishing grounds on the same lake. While excitement on the North Shore’s burning lawnmower was missed Saturday as he treks to places along Higgins Brook. Where Pastor John Ruth took he, the kids from church many moons ago on the same Oakfield end of the Maine lake. Pole in hand, the hook all baited and ready to wet the line. Try his luck at the fish for supper notion. No fish, strikes. But did come back with a few pounds of fiddleheads. That are not up in all areas yet.
Wait it gets better. Side stories of Twitchy’s GTO that got bought by Dave Haggerty but was promised to to Chris Watson in the group. Talk of local Farmer Buzzy Nightingale starting oat, grain planting next week. Let’s me know to get my power washer ready too. That he was just up by the in town house and office and one big tornado of dust from the Katahdin Trust parking lot clean up was swarming around all the buildings in the neighborhood. Like Pearl Harbor, the winter dirt and dust removal happens early Sunday morning for less attention, grief from others away, out for coffee, at church worship or still sleeping.
That leads to side discussions on what could be privatized for state services and would it save money or not.
To keep a handle on local property taxes that no one wants to see head skyward. Jimmy Ritchie says he likes his new white jeep and was not sure the black leather seats would work out but they have along with the double glass moon roof that is pretty peachy keen on a long trip.
Lou Ann his wife is happy. And talk of when is Larry McCarthy, his bride, Jimmy’s sister in law moving out to Cochran Lake so he can add his two cents into the coffee clutch conversation stream? Knowing he would have some new word about Mark Bossie’s quick, unexpected hospital helicopter ride to Bangor last week. I add he called me to let me know he had not forgotten a new furnace quote on one our listing sales. And relay I was told I would be seeing him next week, back on his feet. New and improved. Raring to go.
The weather in Maine being gorgeous but the need for a little water gets a nod of agreement from the group. And then talk of Jerusha Benn trying out a Toyota, Subaru, Honda and doing her home work with parents. Careful study before buying, then selling her jeep that is getting a few too many miles on it. But a couple comments about the trip to Greenville the same day for a wedding event added in.
Then back through Charleston for some different scenery while out of “The County” on top of just the let’s help make a car deal for the daughter chit chat. If it is a “TY-ota” it will be bought locally. But the Subaru Forester is a strong contender for all wheel drive new rides. Just so’s you know. And one more thing, make sure to “like” Kali Emerson on the Panscofar list of local models for their spring show. As the local favorite who needs our support.
Updates on the Hodgdon Maine fire rebuilding process of the Benn’s Auto Sales and Salvage business is noted. Discussion about the new building, size, who’s hammering away out there weaves into the main conversation. While small breakout groups happen over by the gun case. Around the coffee pot. As folks come in and out of the small country store for smokes, mail, milk, bread, gas and beer when the day of the week, or clock says it’s okay. And all add their contribution to the shooting the breeze before moving on to reach into the job jar or report to work. Mark Drew stocks the red deer jerky container as he rolls in, heads for the soda cooler for some early morning refreshment.
Sometimes back in Vietnam era stories surface, get interjected by Doug Cameron, the store owner while the second cup of coffee is slurped.
And he stays busy, on task doing the morning ritual to open up the corner store that has killer pizzas. Before everyone scatters to get some work, projects done for the day. To not waste daylight. To wander back outside but in a highly caffeinated state. For a spring in the step, a little liquid motivation. But not so much in the system to quite levitate. And say, who won the canoe race down the Meduxnekeag yesterday?
Updates on who’s been sick, how are they doing. Who bought this house, who just retired. How work is going and along with a scan of the store copy of the Bangor Deadly newspaper, now everyone is up to speed. Ready for the day to hit the road. Settle up for the snack, to buy a lottery ticket on the way out.
Small town Maine is more connected, folks more aware of others around them. Life is simpler, down to Earth, real up close and personal. Is it like that where you hang your hat now? Or do you know your neighbor? Do you want to? And is there much trust or more worry about others because letting your guard down is not so common place on your end of this blog post signal?