Maine is wide open, friendly, safe and has the distinction of being the 4th lowest crime state.
Walking in Maine is easy, healthy whether you are motoring, tooling, moving or grooving intown Maine. Or lucky enough to find yourself in the country exploring rural trails or hiking up and down over hill and dale.
In cities, real estate agents and brokers will have walkability score or index ratings.
It is one more feature to brag up about a home or apartment location. Safety is added into the walkability number because unlike living in country mouse Maine, our city mice carry tasers.
Look over their shoulder, avoid eye contact and live with a certain level of fear day and especially at night.
So when you live in a small Maine town, walking to places is often quicker. Because of the short distance to travel. Parking is not a huge issue in small towns and most often the hubbub over downtown parking is caused by the business owner or employees abusing it. Not customers.
It is harder to attract to a downtown when busy folks don’t want multi stop shopping but everything under one big box roof. Sad we are that busy not to meet and greet the store owners and know them on a first name basis. But the bottom line cost makes volume sales needed and shopping centers sprung up to address that consumer cry.
Heard one downtown business owner in my home town in Maine talk about one individual who leaves his car running for hours, with a dog in it and the radio on. While he hogs a parking spot. And wanders over to an intown healthy center with a gym bag over one shoulder. To go through the circuit. To work out in a gym inside.
This small Maine business owner joked that parking a little further away from the gym would be part of the exercise that he is looking for provided by good old fashion hoofing it.
When you grow up on a Maine farm and work from before sunrise to sundown the whole concept of working out at a gym is humorous. You make the workout show results around the spread.
Because all the major muscle groups are taxed to the max in the hustling during haying. Especially the 50 pound or more square bails and not the large “rollos” 1200 pounders. With the spring planting and filling up the hopper with fertilizer and seed.
Lugging, tugging and working out with fences that need repair. With pounding with a sledge hammer rusted brackets and hack sawing or cutting torching frozen nuts and bolt on long outdated machinery.
All with a clock ticking in the background to never ever waste any of the daylight when it is blue sky and sunshine. Because weather is critical to make or break it in small Maine farming nip and tuck operations.
Helping a birthing mother cow that is under stress with a breach labor delivery on the coldest day of the year.
Wrestling with frozen water lines to the bowls to quench the livestock thirst. Jumping up and down from milking equipment, frigging with a manure gutter cleaner or the manure spreader that is worn out or just ornery on any given day.
Working as a jack of all trades on a small Maine farm. Empowered with a wide set of skills because hiring it out is just not, not going to happen. Nothing to cover the expense with a quick gander at the current check book balance. Makes it if it to be, it is up to me.
So re-roofing machine sheds, updating loose drafty windows that sound like a kazoo when the northeast, northwest winds howl up against a New England rickety farmstead house that is just minding it’s own business. Trying hard to stand its ground.
Staying ahead of the building maintenance on seven or more out buildings and the original barn on a Maine farm keeps you on your toes. Your focus all about eyes on the farm operation. Wearing blinders like a work horse to avoid costly distractions other than just farming. Where a good year is one you at least break even and stay on the patch of dirt.
So back to walking… the benefits of just sash shaying side to side with arms swinging. Walking with a brisk stride around a small Maine town or out in the country side. What are the benefits? It is low impact, available to all ages and free!
You see the neat surroundings whether neighborhood homes, the pretty down towns and parks. Walking makes you feel part of the community you have fierce pride about because of the intimate connection small Maine towns ooze.
Or walking you encounter wildlife and notice the change of seasons in Maine as you walk and talk. Which is like therapy to discuss what is on your mind and for the valuable feedback to process it all for future reference to guide your life pathway.
Hiking up a hill on foot or skiing down one on a single or pair of boards with a swish swish in new white powder Maine snow. Nothing compares with the feeling of being out in the wide open of nature’s wonder. Skating on a pond, listening to the scrape of metal carving ice. Or the crunch of snow under foot. Efficiently compacted with the pattern of your winter boots or rawhide lattice laced snowshoe design.
Health benefits to tackle depression, diabetes, heart disease and joint pain… yup, walking is part of the cure or reduction of how those elements impact your quality of life.
Tap tap the link about walking benefits.
Walking helps the environment big time. Visit this walking benefit link for an in depth discussion on the merits of moving your feet and hopping up and off that couch.
Walking in Maine and cranking your head around to take in the sights at a state park, a wildlife reserve or wilderness waterway.
Walking under your own power.
Using the other senses that kick in as you smell a steak grilling as you pass a lake camp where the smells of supper sizzling on an open front deck.
Or smell of fall as the leaves change color from just green and one by one drift to the Earth floor you walk on that is moist or bone dry crackling as the temperature dial adjusts to the season change.
Feeling the summer breeze in a t-shirt or the winter gusts pulling your insulated jacket zipper higher up on the neck. Your walk involves the nose, your sense of touch and hearing. When birds sing, crickets chirp and bull frogs bring up the bass line. Or a Maine loon cries or courts on a open waterway you are passing. You pick up more when walking because the motor is silent, you can hear yourself think.
If uneven terrain and older age makes walking during winter cause house arrest, a fear of a broken hip, the stainless steel screws to fix one.
Then walk indoors on a tread mill and crank it up at the mall. Doing circles around the common areas and in and out of buildings. Weaving the course like lacing a shoe. Or in my home town they have marching classes to parade music themes of John Philip Sousa and big band era tunes.
Walking in a square pattern around the indoor basketball court of the parks and rec gym.
At hockey arenas when the kids were in between games, climbing up and down the concrete steps up into the bleachers. Makes a super course for walking an incline with cool temperatures due to the ice to avoid over heating. One more possible walking option for the exercise fix.
Not from a car or bus tour window. Walking out in the open in Maine, an excellent way to discover the magic of this drop dead gorgeous place.
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MOOERS REALTY 69 North Street Houlton Maine 04730