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Last Updated: Jul 26, 2015 - 8:38:04 AM 

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Features

Restore The Republic - The Home of the Freedom Movement!
Down the Road
National Park
Now you folks in Millinocket and that area feel bad that the mills have closed. But those mills are not coming back. If all those folk in Europe had decided that America would not provide anything good for them, I'll bet they would have stayed in Europe. I suspect not many of their descendants wish they were living in Europe. I'm sure the park will not grab adjoining or nearby land. I'm sure the park will not try to interfere with your lives and your making a living. I'm sure the park will bring visitors and money to your area. I'm guessing some of you will even enjoy a national park in your area.
Jul 26, 2015 - 8:43:14 AM

Down the Road
Down the Road and Up the Trail
I think the park rangers used the correct response in citing him for his alleged illegal actions. If he knew about it, it's too bad this "causey" guy didn't let the plans for a party atop the mountain be known to the park rangers. The rangers would have stopped all the ruckus before it occurred. Allegedly, this guy "ran" along the entire Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. I doubt that he actually "ran" a lot of it. For example, I'm pretty sure he didn't "run" up the boulders on the Appalachian Trail, the Hunt Trail in the park, just above timberline. There are metal assistance rungs -- for the hiker to grab and pull him or herself up over those boulders.
Jul 19, 2015 - 6:40:20 AM

Down the Road
Down the (Searsport) Rud a Piece
We moved here because, when I taught school in Thorndike, I lived in Swanville and got to know the area from Searsport to Camden. Until I have a faulty hip replaced at the Belfast hospital, our "sport" is taking photos, many of which become our iMac screen savers. Once that new hip is in place, we plan to do a lot of walking on the many trails in the region.
Jul 12, 2015 - 6:56:15 AM

Features
Special WW1 Remembrance -- The Baker Boys
He was a wonderful grandfather who involved all his grandchildren in his special way. It was not until his WW1 diaries came to life that I was able to comprehend just how involved in the war he had actually been, and just how much life experience he really had as a consequence. Victor's wartime story, along with that of his older brother, Malcolm Robert Baker, who was killed during the battle of the Somme, is recounted in the book from Victor's old diaries, along with extensive research and supporting images.
Jul 10, 2015 - 9:19:02 AM

Features
Food for Thought
If an entire people can be regarded as "awful" in the eyes of a child, what is the cause? No doubt bigotry is learned at an early age. Exposure to negative stereotyping determines the way children look at others. On their own they communicate and play together, regardless of their color or creed. Once they learn prejudice from misguided adults, they discover they can inflict pain by hurling racial epithets at each other. If they are lucky, they are cured of this "disease" through self-examination or by enlightened teachers who appear along their life's path.
Jul 10, 2015 - 9:14:15 AM

Features
Know Thyself
Ignorance is dispelled by knowledge. Man's life can be rendered meaningful by gnosis giving him the opportunity to test himself and learn his personal strengths--what he is good at in life--and also learn and acknowledge what his weaknesses and shortcomings are. He can apply self-knowledge and live his life based on what his strengths are and at the same time improve himself and overcome his weaknesses and thus making him a better, more fulfilled individual through his existence on Earth.
Jul 9, 2015 - 11:03:25 PM

Features
Fear Shapes Our Lives
Nine people gathered in a circle to study their sacred scripture were murdered in Charleston, South Carolina. There are many ways to understand this horrifying event. A Greek student of mine wrote me from Athens that night, bewildered by the violence, and asked if there is a civil war between blacks and white in America. The answer to that is a firm No, of course, because the violent attacks are almost exclusively white-on-black. But it is easy to understand why people around the globe would see the violence in America as a sign of a civil war. The sad truth is that these murderous impulses are rooted in our unfinished and undigested civil war of 150 years ago and the systems of slavery which preceded it.
Jul 9, 2015 - 10:36:25 PM

Down the Road
Down the Road a Piece to... I forget where
Then we headed out John Street in search of a back way back to Belfast and Searsport to avoid once more driving through Camden. After a few right turns, we somehow found ourselves back on John Street, heading back to Route 1. (Mind you, I wasn't lost, just a bit confused. Maineiacs, even imported ones like me, never get lost. Just turned around.) After driving through busy Campden again, we headed toward Belfast on Route 52.
Jul 9, 2015 - 12:06:56 AM

Down the Road
Down the Searsport Road a Piece
We're settling in at our new "rent" in Searsport, an apartment about a half-mile off the nearest road, Routes 1 and 3. I used to live in Swanville a hundred or so years ago, while I was teaching in Thorndike. That's how I got to know the area. Belfast, about five miles away, has a nice system of parks within the city. Yesterday we stopped at one of them and watched a white cruise ship docked at the town dock. We know nothing about the "American Glory," except it made a peaceful background as we visited one of the city's parks.
Jun 28, 2015 - 9:55:46 PM

Down the Road
Down the Same Old Road
Years later at a ministers' conference, another minister declared that I was a communist because I didn't like softball. He was half right. I didn't like softball. But I loved volleyball, which apparently didn't prevent me from being a communist. (Volleyball didn't require any skills, just jump up and down and holler and take an occasional swat at the ball as it went flying past my ball-avoiding head.) I may have -- actually not -- been a communist, but it was that preacher who said I was who a few years ago was caught "running around" (without a ball) with a deacon's wife. I don't know what happened to the wife, but the preacher ended up leaving the state -- and I hope the ministry.
Jun 20, 2015 - 8:17:30 PM

Features
Embracing the Life Changing Power of Africa: My Travels with King Kong
Our group of 20 fellow travelers was divided into teams to handle the daily chores of cooking, cleaning, loading and unloading of gear, and setup of camp, which included the task of gathering firewood and making the fire for cooking. (So how do you find firewood in the middle of the Sahara Desert? You don't -- but you do find camel dung which makes a pretty good fire.) I was given the job of mechanic, being responsible for checking the fluid levels, tires, and general mechanical condition of our two vehicles, one of which was an old British Army bus named "King Kong". What began as a simple daily routine of checking oil and water levels became a nightmare of mechanical breakdowns. There were broken springs to replace, clogged fuel lines, flat tires to fix, and finally the big breakdown came when a valve dropped through the top of the piston, leaving us stranded in the middle of the Sahara 200 miles from the nearest town!
Jun 15, 2015 - 9:33:46 AM

Down the Road
One of two phones that didn't work, but now do -- we hope.
I spent two and a-half hours on the phone at the cable company's somewhere-in-the-South headquarters, trying to get what was broke fixed. That was yesterday. Today it got fixed. Turned out that one of the "boxes" chuck full of electronic signals and circuits was worn out.
Jun 14, 2015 - 1:27:10 AM

Down the Road
Down the just-moved Road about 30 miles from where we were
Nor do I recall how Mike, one of their nine kids, and I became friends. What I do remember is Mike helping me onto Little Guy, who was anything but little. Looking back, I think he stood about 16 hands tall, a hand, I believe being four inches in length. He was a giant to me with Mike teaching me how to ride. Little Guy and I rode all through the woods, which I'm guessing must have been about 20 acres or so between Suburbia and the Great Valley. The Great Valley had once been farms, and there still were some. But Suburbia was quickly moving in to where the farms had been.
Jun 9, 2015 - 4:56:35 AM

Features
My experience in nursing vs. holistic nursing
As a nurse working in hospitals I followed the usual routines caring for my patients. I enjoyed the work and did this for many years. There was always something new to learn, and I joined nursing organisations in order to keep up with the latest trends. But then, all this changed when I attended one particular meeting. The subject was "diet," so I expected the usual recommendation of "meat and two vegetables, fats, dairy and carbohydrates." Instead, the presenter introduced us to something called "Applied Kinesiology" and showed through muscle testing that certain foods were not appropriate for certain individuals.
Jun 7, 2015 - 3:25:30 AM

Down the Road
Down the Road some distance
Summer in Maine I find interesting, unlike the hot summers of my childhood in suburban Philadelphia, where it would become hot and stay that way. I remember standing in the back yard as a kid, dreaming of our annual August trip to Maine. It was okay in Maine in the daytime, not as hot as Pennsylvania but hot enough to be comfortable. It was the evenings when things turned arctic. On would go the sweaters and even jackets to stay warm. This, if I remember, was part of the fun....different than Pennsylvania.
May 31, 2015 - 6:38:10 AM

Down the Road
Down the Old Maine Road
But it stated something I found interesting, that all things in life turn out for the good, even though some things don't appear to be good while they're happening. So, I thought -- actually thought -- about my own life and things that have happened to me. Many of them turned out, if not good themselves, to be stepping stones to better circumstances. I didn't come to Maine in 1965 to work. I came to have fun, hike, canoe, ride boats from coastal towns, bird hunt, and otherwise enjoy myself. Once we live in Searsport, I'll have time with Dolores to do the things I came to Maine to do. And there is much to do not far from Searsport.
May 24, 2015 - 6:17:15 AM

Features
Six Lessons I've Learned After Two Tragedies
I never would have imagined the path my life has taken. I have experienced the depths of sorrow and known the essence of true joy. I have come to believe out of the tragedy of losing my dear two sons within two short years, that it serves each of us to embrace every moment, because that is all that is certain. Every moment is a gift to learn from and gain insight from. Our moments become part of us and make us who we are.
May 21, 2015 - 5:58:50 AM

Down the Road
State parks opening, a sign spring has arrived
I saw a letter to the editor today, encouraging us all to go up and visit Peaks Kenny State Park a few miles north of Dover Foxcroft. I've never been there, largely because it's pretty far from our home, about 70 miles I believe without measuring the miles in the Gazetteer. That map says we can picnic, camp, and otherwise enjoy the park alongside Sebec Lake, another place we haven't visited. In western Maine, we've never visited the tiny Range Pond State Park, but we've been to Sebago Lake State Park and even ridden the river boat there. When we lived in South Paris, we spent much time on the trails of the White Mountain National Forest, but that's not a state park.
May 17, 2015 - 8:35:17 AM

Features
Comedy for Church and Community
I began the next year. After nine years and four months, of research, writing, and hard work, my screwball comedy prayer adventure, Sir Christian de Galis and the Fish Gravy, was published in November, 2014; the following are some of my thoughts on comedy for church and community. Comedy in the Bible: "But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty." (I Corinthians 1:27) "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but broken spirit drieth the bones." (Proverbs 17:22)
May 14, 2015 - 8:43:29 AM

Down the Road
Down the Road a Piece -- with critters
In Acadia National Park, there are trails and paved walks where evidence of beaver action is all around. There are felled trees nearby, and if it's near water, their round homes are starting to be visible. I've stood and watched beaver, usually not at work but at swim. They come right along, as long as they are unaware of our presence. But when they learn we're watching, there is a quick, loud slap of their tales on the water, and they disappear.
May 9, 2015 - 9:28:10 PM

Features
Self-Mastery
Finding one's truth, examining one's life in the pursuit of happiness and peace is a valuable and enjoyable past time. As we mature it is expected that we become wiser and able to lead by example. But do we all mature? Is mature even the right way of expressing this concept? I think the responsibility to live a true and just life rests with each individual. To do this well one needs to get to know oneself deeply, accepting the good, bad and ugly. It flows so that we can all change. Our world needs a new wave of visionaries, men and women who are not lost in our fast, consumerist world.
May 6, 2015 - 9:18:29 PM

Down the Road
Down the muddy Road a Piece
I came to Maine to have fun, to enjoy places such as Baxter State Park. I've been there over a half-dozen times, climbed Katahdin (note: not Mt. Katahdin, as "Katahdin" means the greatest mountain) six times. The first time with a family I met just below timberline. I accompanied them to the summit and down again below tree line. It was a shocking revelation, that there is that much rock, open space, and cold air blowing around up there.
May 3, 2015 - 12:05:32 AM

Features
An Exercise in Argumentative Poetry - No. 6 The Wondrous Life at Hand
Those who believe in an afterlife have much to look forward to.
The heavens with all their splendor and indulgences are waiting.
Some expect a life of unequaled luxury in the very best of health.
Others await a future in companionship with their almighty god.
Yet others see life go on much as is but cleansed of all inadequacies.
There is no shortage of suggestions about the good lives to come.

Apr 30, 2015 - 9:45:12 AM

Down the Road
Down the Religious Road a Piece
Martin Luther, 10 November 1483 -- 18 February 1546, was "a German friar, priest and professor of theology who was a seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation. Initially an Augustinian friar, Luther came to reject several teachings and practices of the Roman Catholic Church. He strongly disputed the claim that freedom from God's punishment for sin could be purchased with money. He confronted indulgence salesman Johann Tetzel, a Dominican friar, with his (Luther's) Ninety-Five Theses in 1517.
Apr 26, 2015 - 7:05:34 AM

Down the Road
"Putting them down"
I knew these pets loved us, but I never realized how deeply we loved them. Most of our cats were carried off by a neighborhood owl while outside. At least that's what we thought, because we had seen the owl hanging around in the trees. It's tough, opening the door and stepping out to find your pets and not find them.
Apr 19, 2015 - 6:18:51 PM

Features
An Exercise in Argumentative Poetry - No. 4 Matters of Conscience
Conscience is defined as the faculty to distinguish right from wrong.
What's right and wrong is a convention serving sociable interaction.
As long as people adhere to their decree, conscience is a non-issue.
But if they don't, their conscience will kick in and stir up emotions.
Doing more good than necessary will yield feelings of grandness,
Usually linked with hopes for reciprocation by another kind party.

Apr 13, 2015 - 8:25:19 PM

Down the Road
Getting ready for spring and some walks
A year or so after Dolores underwent two brain operations at Massachusetts General Hospital for a couple of brain aneurysms, one which was leaking and one which was about to leak, I took her for a walk at Great Head in Acadia. We were walking south and we came to a dozen-foot-high cliff we needed to go down. She had never done much trail hiking before I met her. I kind of guided her down, a new adventure for her. I had forgotten her limitations both from her lack of hiking experience and her still recovering from the brain operations. But she made it down okay, and we continued our walk to Sand Beach.
Apr 13, 2015 - 8:22:30 PM

Down the Road
Easter -- spring is here
The biblical Easter story is a wonderful story, especially for people like me who believe it. Jesus rising from the dead, communicating with his followers, and finally rising into the sky. As far as I know, Christianity is the only religion that has such an optimistic story.
Apr 6, 2015 - 9:04:34 AM

Down the Road
Walking/boat cruise adventure
We were waiting for the departure time of a Camden boat cruise, so to fill in the time we went out to Fernalds Neck Preserve near the northern end of Megunticook Lake where it meets Norton Pond. The preserves' neighbors, as you drive in to the preserve, didn't seem all that friendly. I recall one couple putting down their chores and staring at us as we drove past. I didn't think we were that funny looking. Perhaps funny looking folk on other occasions had driven past that house on the way to the preserve.
Apr 1, 2015 - 6:14:06 AM

Features
An Exercise in Argumentative Poetry - No. 2: Longing for Care and Kindness
We all are exposed to the elements and nature's cataclysms.
Storms, floods, quakes, and volcanic eruptions decimate humanity.
Pandemic diseases add much suffering and increase the carnage.
And deadly violence in our own ranks continues to run its course.
Human ingenuity offers some degree of protection.
But on the whole has failed us in securing our safety and welfare.
We remain vulnerable and have reason to fear an uncertain future.

Apr 1, 2015 - 6:07:40 AM

Down the Road
Exploring Map 14* -- and a couple of others
We've paddled our canoe on Lake Megunticook in Camden, where we almost got turned around -- "turned around" in Maine, not "lost" -- and where I steered our electric-motor-driven 14-footer canoe against a rock that deflected us with no harm done. From now on, however, we'll be taking the ocean-going boat cruises, since last fall we gave our canoe, electric motor, and battery to my daughter and her husband in western Maine.
Mar 27, 2015 - 4:50:53 AM

Features
Meditation now a mainstream method of boosting mental health
One interesting thing that was found in the various studies is that the method of meditation seems to make little difference, that what is important is the act of sitting quietly and allowing the mind to become calm. The oldest form of meditation is simple breath meditation, the act of following the flowing out and coming in of the breath, eventually making the breath long, slow, and deep. However, the study also showed that people who simply sit quietly on a daily basis, perhaps watch the sunrise, perhaps listen to soothing or uplifting music, or the recitation of affirmations, all had similar results.
Mar 23, 2015 - 6:42:06 AM

Down the Road
Dover Foxcroft, to where we didn't drive
But we've learned a bit online about what was originally two towns, Dover and Foxcroft. "... separated by the Piscataquis River (Dover is on the south side, Foxcroft on the north). "Dover was purchased from Massachusetts by Boston merchants Charles Vaughan and John Merrick, both of whom had emigrated from England . It was first permanently settled in 1803 by Eli Towne from Temple, New Hampshire, then incorporated on January 19, 1822.
Mar 20, 2015 - 7:23:10 AM

Down the Road
Dogs that owned us
On a scale of something to something, I have to tell you the cats are a lot easier to care for....except maybe the six-month old, Stella, who is now victimizing us and our six-year-old male, Tom. (Tom seems like an appropriate name for a Tom cat. He was given us by a veterinarian, who said Tom has the kitty equivalent of HIV. We just have to keep him away from other critters, so he doesn't bite them.)
Mar 12, 2015 - 7:46:10 AM

Down the Road
Coming to Maine by train
"There" was my Great Aunt Amy's farm in Belgrade. We packed our clothes and took the train from Paoli, PA to New York's Penn Station. We then went to Grand Central Station and took a train to Boston. The Pullman car gave us a sad view of the people living in Harlem, and I still can't get those sights out of my memory. They were sitting on steps, hanging out windows, and on the streets. I took it all in with a kind of shock.
Mar 6, 2015 - 3:20:10 AM

Down the Road
Mud season is next
Doing Maine Appalachian Trail Club volunteering I've driven narrow roads near Monson that were either gravel, large stones that made me stop and move them, or some mud. The mud always scared me more, because I didn't know what was down in there where the tires would go or get stuck. On some of those volunteer trips, I've driven with one wheel in the grassy center of the road and the other on the tension-creating edge of the road. I never got stuck doing that, and I never got stuck in the mud that filled the normal place the tires would roll.
Feb 26, 2015 - 10:48:30 PM

Features
Turning Point in my Marriage -- and my Life
For the first time, I was terrified I had made a terrible mistake in marrying him. Perhaps we were a total mismatch after all and our relationship could never work. Like the Ladies Home Journal, we were classic candidates for "Can This Marriage Be Saved?" He was sixteen years older and an African. I was an Ohio farm girl. On top of that, he had been divorced. What had I gotten myself into? A fleeting moment of respite came, I'm still young. I can start over.
Feb 26, 2015 - 3:31:35 AM

Features
The Writing of The Soul Comes First
I learned that many "evil" people are simply doing what was done to them, and desperately looking for someone with the strength to show them how to get over it. I learned that people used to being in control find the sensations that come with being loved to be frightening, almost a betrayal by the thirst of their hearts. I learned that many intellectual atheists are "spiritual", and those that are not do not realize how frightening others find the strength of their minds. I realized that Biblical literalists use their dogmatism to hold those minds at bay.
Feb 19, 2015 - 10:05:30 PM

Features
When The Church Condones Silence: Confronting Sexual Abuse within Leadership and Family
I hope to enlighten other faithful members of the Catholic Church with the truth of how molesters are kept in active ministry, endangering innocent children and families. Being a cradle Catholic, I was encouraged to trust them. But, I was continually troubled because I saw no indication the Church was doing as it had promised. My brother remained in active ministry, being transferred from parish to unsuspecting parish with no warnings to anyone about the danger he presented.
Feb 15, 2015 - 1:23:35 AM

Down the Road
Driving in snow
We headed west back through that New Hampshire town to visit friends who lived 20 miles west of there. When we left their house that evening, Route 2 was so awful with snow that we headed south on another road. After all, there was bound to be less snow south than where we were. But south took us over a mountain and down somewhere near Conway. We crossed into Maine and started driving north. Only to encounter a young couple, who were stuck in that snow.
Feb 15, 2015 - 1:20:07 AM

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