Bar Harbor, Maine
In which I recollect the excitement thus far… (To see what the heck we are doing in Maine and where we are going, see here.)
Day 1 – On which Danny decides to kick off the fun by waking up at 5:15 AM. On which John goes out to load up our last few bags, only to discover that I left the interior lights on last night and the battery is dead. This is a wretched way to begin a 4500 mile road trip. Somehow, he managed to not verbalize or even act on all that rage, causing me to be hopelessly in love with him again. Once on the road, the ease of travel is amazingly better than last year’s trip, namely the fact that bottles and breastpumps a la car are no where to be found. Chasing toddlers at rest stops is kind of treacherous, but I’ll take it.
Our kids are growing up with a keen gratitude for the little things in life (or very middle class taste). They think our Connecticut Hojo room that night is amazing and spacious, despite the various off smells that are thick in the room and hallways. Add a rotisserie chicken and $1.25 generic orange sherbet for dinner (Abby professes her love for the poor little dead chicken about 20x), and a supercool post-dinner playground trip, and they could not be happier. Even I swoon a bit over the cheap mattresses, which beat the air mattresses in our empty house from the past two nights. Never felt better to have a bed and a bistro table so close by!
Day 2 – On which we loath the green-dotted scenic routes in the atlas and Google Maps for saying it was a short drive and me for insisting we take the scenic route instead of the interstate. It was not any more scenic than I-95 and took an hour longer than expected. The boys stated in no uncertain terms that it was one more hour than their little butts could handle, and when they scream, we agree in misery.
However, we made it to Maine, a new state for all six of us, and ate lunch with a view of the ocean. We were serenaded with storefront signs introducing us to all things Maine-ly Motors and Maine-ly Ice Cream and Maine-ly Lobsters. Purple lupine along the road were beautiful, and the hotel at the end of the day was lovely too. If our empty house made Hojo seem palatial the night before, this next place is divine. A view of the bay/islands/ocean, towels thick enough to call fluffy, a continental breakfast with a toaster too, and only the smell of bleach to greet us.
Day 3 – On which John declares that he will never travel off season again, due to the fact that off season apparently equals weather that probably sucks. The prices are better, but after our water view disappeared into a hazy white mist from ground to sky and the temps hover around 50, and we put on every layer we have to go hike in the rain, we are a bit jaded. That said, it was the longest hike we’ve ever done with all the kids (3.2 whopping miles) and dubbed by Rachel to be “the most awesome place” she’d ever been. (Until Abby asked – “even better than Disneyland?” – and she conceded that Disney would come first.) We decide to extend our stay an extra day to chase the sunshine that they say is coming.
Day 4 – On which I started to have no complaints, until I find out for myself that our hotel internet is slower than what I had in the 90s and I have recollected all these things twice now! Speaking of twice, twins are twice as nice, but one will inevitably fuss and hurry you through your morning, even if they are carried at will, have ocean vistas in every direction, and a lovely sandy beach complete with edible goldfish to wrap it all up. Fortunately, their smiles and cheeks are irresistibly cute, and all is forgiven. Finally saw the quintessential rocky Maine coast complete with a few lobster boats and enough sun to make a shiny spot in the clouds – absolutely beautiful, and no rain today!!!
Oh yes, traveling with babies does have another upside. Nap time. It means each parent gets either a few hours to chill in a quiet room, or a few hours to hang out solo with the girls. Either way, you make out great. Can I also say that if someone came to my room and emptied the trash and made the beds and wiped the counters, I could almost get used to living in 200 sq. feet forever?!