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Retired publishing executive ecstatic with the idea of spending most of his time on the coast of Maine

Monday, August 29, 2011


If you're an alien just landed on Maine's midcoast this morning, you would see little evidence that a big storm has passed this way. There are a few twigs and leaves on the lawn, the surf's up and making noise, the sea's color is browned near the shore and over the ledges where the rockweed is a bit roiled up, a lobster buoy floats 10 feet from shore. On a walk to Lucia Beach, you would see a few limbs fractured, and on Bay View Terrace, a tree fallen down and cleared away from traffic. In the cities to the south, you would see a lot more, a lot of trees down, for example. Granted that Irene's winds were a little stronger down there. Yet how much of the problem results from the essential rootlessness of city species?

Irene made some of those species prepare the French Toast defense (buy scads of milk, eggs and bread). Others did windows, filled tubs with water, stored lawn furniture, pulled in boats. Some of this was actually needed, but everyone got a good scare, thanks to the incessant blare from media screens. Mainers were reported to moor a few boats a little more tightly. I like to think that the cold Atlantic protects us from many southern things, including monokinis and beach volleyball.

Being less than a Mainer, I took my scare manfully, wasting time inside like a good boy, unable to focus, but at 4:00, seizing a break in the wind and rain, I went for a fast walk, worrying only slightly about our strong-rooted trees. By 5:00, the sun came out for an hour of cocktails on the deck.

Haiku for Irene:

Storm fizzles, only drops
Pine debris in G&T
Needles seeking kin

Oh gee, I almost forgot to point out to you the best feature of a hurricane's aftermath. A warm, breezy, clear, sunny day, and the prospect of a whole week of same, to be enjoyed equally by city and country and alien folks, I'm sure, but for different reasons.

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