Sweet Escape

Roque Bluffs Beach

I watched out the window as we made our final approach into Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport late Saturday night.  I struggled to see the familiar landmarks due to the thick haze blanketing the lights on the ground.  The woman sitting next to me, anxious about making her connecting flight to Los Angeles, said she thought she could already feel the increased humidity inside the plane.  Ahhhh…summer in Atlanta!

We were returning from a glorious week in Downeast Maine.  For those not familiar with the term “Downeast,” it’s the area that begins East of Ellsworth, Maine, and runs up the coast to the Canadian border.  Lubec, Calais, Eastport, and Machias are the principle towns.  Some people include Bar Harbor, but I’m more of a purist.

Down East Community Hospital in Machias is where I took my very first breath.  It’s only a mile or so down the road from where my parents are buried.  Like a migratory bird, I return every summer – as if there’s a built-in homing device in my heart.

My kids love it there too.  We stay at a cottage on Bog Lake in Northfield, just outside of Machias.  The weather was beautiful – sunny and breezy.  Just the way I like it.  Evenings were cool in the mid to high 50’s.  We kept the windows open all night, curling up in our blankets like cocoons.  That’s my idea of heaven.

Scott and Michael kayaking on Bog Lake.

But back to reality – which hit us full force as we exited the plane and walked straight into the oven that was the ramp leading up to the gate.  My son Michael asked, “Why is it so hot at night?”

” This is what it’s like at home, remember?” I said.

The end of vacation is always a little sad.  But I’m the type of person who always tries to look on the bright side of life, so I decided to make a list of the things I love most about our home here in Georgia:

My bed.  It was a welcome relief at about 2 a.m. on Sunday morning.

My job.  I’ve worked for the City of Peachtree City for 12 years and the reason I’ve stayed is because of the positive work culture.  As with most empolyers, times are tough, but the people – both the staff and the public – make it all worth while.

St. Paul Lutheran Church & School.  I don’t even know where to start on this one.  St. Paul has been part of our extended family for three years now, nurturing and educating our boys.  I feel lucky to have found them.

Partner’s II Pizza’s House Dressing.

Southern hospitality.  I went shopping at Publix on Sunday and almost ran into a man as I was reaching for a plastic bag in the meat department.  We both said, “Excuse me,” but he got to it first and ripped a bag off the roll.  Then he shook it open and held it for me while I put my chicken in it.  How’s that for good manners?

I keep reminding myself of these things, especially when I take my lunch break and venture out into the 98 degree heat.  Partner’s dressing (on the side) always helps…

Michael at Bog Lake in Northfield, Maine.

Jill Prouty

Jill is a reader, writer, and professional librarian who enjoys spending her free time with her husband of twelve years and their two sons. She has an MSLS from Clarion University of Pennsylvania and a BA from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

August 6, 2010