Friday, July 16, 2010

The Man, in Maine

Maine hasn't been this much in the national news for a long time. The President arrived in Bar Harbor at noon today with the financial reform package securely in hand, thanks to three Republican senators, one from Massachusetts and two from Maine. The welcoming party featured a bunch of Democrats, including Governor Baldacci, who presented the Obamas with Maine-made gifts, and one of Maine's US Reps, Mike Michaud (the other, Chellie Pingree, was fogged in on North Haven, which sounds good to me). Senators Snowe and Collins were not there, having already delivered their Washington-made gift. Let's not go overboard with this bipartisan stuff, after all.

The Prez must be feeling pretty good this weekend. The BP well is even temporarily capped. And of course he's in Maine, or at least I think Bar Harbor qualifies as Maine. In summer it's debatable. I grant that Bar Harbor sports at least a couple of differences from the scenes of his recent battles: temperature at 70 (DC 94, Baton Rouge 95); water and skies that are clear and blue and untainted by petroleum or invective; friendly people, not adversaries or the despairing. As long as the First Family experiences Acadia's hiking trails and pink granite ledges, carriage paths and wildlife, I'll forgive them their rebuff of the real Maine. It's only two days, I know, not enough time for a canoe trip on the Allagash or a sail on Penobscot Bay or blueberry picking on the barrens of Washington County, out of the glare of the cameras. In the real Maine you could thank Olympia and Susan in person, over a Whoopie Pie and a Moxie.