Southern Vacation, a New Year, Frozen Pipes, Amelia is Awesome
Every year we head to Virginia over the winter holidays. We visit Williamsburg, live in a timeshare, go see faux Colonial nonsense, and wonder what it is about that area that attracts so many people to it.
I’ve discovered a new dimension to this annual excursion: I miss Maine terribly.
There were some things that stood out to me immediately about Virginia after our first year in Maine, and Lancaster. Both places are far more diverse than where we live now. In Lancaster, more Hispanic residents, and in Virginia, more black. Maine is exceptionally tolerant, but they don’t have to exercise that particular muscle fairly often. More on that in a bit.
We stay with my parents in Lancaster, PA, to and fro Virginia, so the kids get to see at least two sets of grandparents. Amelia occasionally gets to see three sets of grandparents, but that didn’t happen this trip.
We drove back to Maine from Pennsylvania on New Years Day, arriving just in time to find how much snow accumulated, and below zero temperatures. The ladies stayed in the minivan while I postholed to the snow thrower and got busy clearing their way into the house. Everything was great, except for the far side of our house, where the kitchen sink and dishwasher are, the pipes were frozen over.
A day later, we were able to thaw things out with a space heater.
The next snow came hard, and it broke my auger belt in my snow thrower. I installed my spare all wrong, so it, too, broke. With our Sears Parts store closing over the summer, and now the anchor store closing in Bangor, I had to order off of Amazon, but they didn’t come in time.
It’s all good, the plow guy has to make a living.
We also learned Amelia won an Honorable Mention award for her film short about protecting the ocean.
I also dropped out of the Congressional race. My National Guard schedule makes ballot petition signature collection profoundly problematic. I was running as a Libertarian–volunteers and funds are in short supply, as are potential signers. I wasn’t going to run as a write in candidate, either. Diminished credibility, absolute waste of time. It worked when I couldn’t collect signatures in time for the primary when I lived in Pennsylvania and ran for state house, but we had active committees with volunteers working at precincts. That’s not a thing in a federal race, really.
I’ll probably run again in 2020 when I have more time because I’ll be retired from the military.
In the meantime, I guess I set some personal goals for the year:
1) Help Amelia maintain her priority of becoming a marine biologist.
2) Volunteer more with veterans, immigrants, and the homeless.
3) Start a program for technical workforce development in Waldo County.
4) Cut more firewood.
5) Improve my davening skills so I can do more in services at synagogue. I like davening shacharit and the Torah service, but my Hebrew isn’t as strong as it could be. Who has the time?
6) Hike more. Ski more. Canoe more.