Here in Norway, we’re lucky enough to have a small independent bookstore run by Erica and her chubby puggle.
It’s tough to make it, but Erica keeps up a great selection of bestsellers, classics, kids books and the most thorough section of Maine-related books I’ve ever seen. From ice fishing to deer-only cookbooks, it’s provided some lessons a transplant needs (chiefly: you will always be “from away”).
One of the best things about Books n’ Things is that even if they don’t have it, they’ll get it for you, no extra charge. It’s like a super request machine, okay like Amazon, without the guilt of funding enslavement.
Also like other Main Street staples, it’s a place to run into friends, get forced into conversations with that one old lady you see everywhere, try to escape getting roped into yet another volunteer task, and watch out-of-towners try to get directions:
“Maine is well-known for its disdain for anyone not from Maine (that is, “from away”). These are commonly called “flatlanders,” even though most of the populated sections of Maine are flat and most of the surrounding states and provinces are not. Mainahs delight in giving them driving directions, which always boil down to, “Ya cahn’t git they’ah from he’ah.” Many Maine towns and landmarks are given difficult names for this exact purpose. Others, such as Mexico, Norway, and Peru, are little tricks to scare the tourist into thinking he has overshot everything.”
The Art of the Everyday – February 6: Week of Happy – Enjoy this series of simple (and some not so simple) things that make me happy while I’m on vacation!