Just A Song Before I Go

Just a song before I go,
To whom it may concern
Traveling twice the speed of sound
It’s easy to get burned

When the shows were over
We had to get back home,
And when we opened up the door
I had to be alone

She helped me with my suitcase,
She stands before my eyes
Driving me to the airport,
And to the friendly skies

Going through security
I held her for so long
She finally looked at me in love,
And she was gone

Just a song before I go,
A lesson to be learned
Traveling twice the speed of sound
It’s easy to get burned

Just A Song Before I Go – Crosby, Stills & Nash

I intended to wait till this weekend to change to the new blog, but something told me to end this part of my life tonight. For those of you that have been with me from the start, you have seen me bare my soul, commit to my mistakes, apologized the best I could for everything I have done. You supported me when my father died, comforted me as I stood alone and buried him. Shared funny stories about yourselves, and laughed at mine. You have all become the best friends I have ever had, even though we have never met in person.

So now I start the rest of my life, free from my past and all the hardships. I think I can finally let go of that part of me but still hold dear the lessons I have learned. I go now to my future with a renewed sense of joy and wonder, a feeling of accomplishment for having shared with many all the demons within that I feared to deal with alone. A mighty weight has been lifted from me and I think I may just be able to forgive myself now. I know one things for sure, I can no longer carry around the emotional baggage I have been struggling with for so long, and still lead a happy life.

And so I end this blog with one last song before I go, to whom it may concern, traveling twice the speed of sound, how many times I was burned. Now the show is over, I’m going to my new home, and when I open up the door, I’ll never be alone.

Your Friend, John

PS: Here’s the link to the new blog. I hope to see you all there.

This Is For All The Lonely People

This is for all the lonely people
Thinking that life has passed them by
Don’t give up
Until you drink from the silver cup
And ride that highway in the sky

This is for all the single people
Thinking that love has left them dry
Don’t give up
Until you drink from the silver cup
You never know until you try

Well, I’m on my way
Yes, I’m back to stay
Well, I’m on my way back home

This is for all the lonely people
Thinking that life has passed them by
Don’t give up
Until you drink from the silver cup
She’ll never take you down or
Never give you up
You’ll never know until you try

Lonely People – America

So I’m sitting in another rest area, this time in Pennsylvania. I’m parked in a bad spot as I ran out of hours to drive, and I hope I don’t get a knock at the door late this evening. If I do it wont be a “Lady of the evening” but most likely a State Trooper telling me to leave. This is what happens to truck drivers all the time, not enough parking spaces for the number of trucks on the road. The bullshit drivers have to go through has taken it’s toll on me. I’m so glad it will come to an end in the not too distant future for me.

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The never ending traffic jams, the rude and sometimes hostile drivers, arrogant receivers, breakdowns and all the other negative influences in the day of a truck driver can have a strong effect on ones outlook on life. I miss the positive side of driving. The beauty of the open road, the stillness of the “Big Sky” of Montana, the endless grassy plains of New Mexico, and the red rocks of Utah, they are lost to me now as this company no longer travels out of the Northeast.

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Montana
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New Mexico
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Utah

I remember each of these moments as if they were just yesterday. Each photograph is a part of the movie running in my mind everytime I feel life is passing me by. When I think about the moment I took each picture I can still feel the excitement I felt standing before that majestic mountain, driving for hours with nothing but grass, gazing down on that almost moon like landscape. It’s moments like tonight that I realize it’s not too late, life has not passed me by. I still have time to fill my album some more, complete what I started when I bought my first camera.

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Southern Arizona
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Colorado Rockies
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Smoky Mountains
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Southern California

When I think about it, I have been lucky. Most people never move more than 50 miles from their birthplace, never take a vacation to the four corners of this country. They never get to see what I have seen, never get to experience the incredible panorama. No, life has not passed me by just yet, I still have time to capture the essence of life on a boat. I have time to bring the unmatched beauty of the aquatic side of this planet to all those who wish to see as I see. I have time to try and express every emotion with words as I snap the shutter. As to love passing me by, I haven’t given up on that either!

For There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done

Carry on my wayward son
For there’ll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don’t you cry no more

Once I rose above the noise and confusion
Just to get a glimpse beyond the illusion
I was soaring ever higher, but I flew too high
Though my eyes could see I still was a blind man
Though my mind could think I still was a mad man
I hear the voices when I’m dreamin’, I can hear them say

Carry on my wayward son
For there’ll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don’t you cry no more

Masquerading as a man with a reason
My charade is the event of the season
And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don’t know
On a stormy sea of moving emotion
Tossed about I’m like a ship on the ocean
I set a course for winds of fortune, but I hear the voices say

Carry on my wayward son
For there’ll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don’t you cry no more

Carry on, you will always remember
Carry on, nothing equals the splendor
Now your life’s no longer empty
Surely heaven waits for you

Carry on my wayward son
For there’ll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don’t you cry no more

Carry On Wayward Son – Kansas

Today is the 2 year anniversary of this blog and my quest for some sense of peace. Finding an outlet for all the confused feelings and thoughts has been nothing short of a miracle, and I’m close to what I feel will give me some closure to the sins of my past. As I drove along today I was reflecting on this past 2 days off. I went to Portland and filed the papers to change my name, visited my mom and took her out to lunch, and went to a social gathering of people who live on their sailboats. There was over 70 boats there and over 150 people.

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I went because I was invited by a fellow blogger couple that lives in Maine during the summer, then lives on their boat down south during the winter. They were also the hosts of this meeting, and as such had alot to do during the engagement. I wanted to speak at length with them but they were far to busy for that, and all but 2 others barely even looked at me during my time there. I did not feel very good about this group or the cold shoulder I received when trying to engage some in conversation. The 2 people that did talk are fellow Mainers who dock their boat at the other marina in Winterport just a mile or so away from where I will call home. I guess this wasn’t a total loss as I will look them up soon as I enjoyed their enthusiasm about boating. Rockland Harbor was really full with all the boats. This is just a small amount of them.

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It’s also cool to see the working yards that repair commercial vessels. The chain links that haul the boats up the ramps are as big around as my head!

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All in all it was still a nice day, and any time I drive along the coast I feel better. I’m only $3000.00 away from paying off my boat, and I should make the last payment by September 1st and have it moved to Winterport by the third week. By the end of September I will have paid a years storage in advance and then I can begin the refit process. I almost can’t believe I have a boat, and everything is starting to fall into place. My insecure side is waiting for the other shoe to fall, like it has so many times in the past, but what I notice now is that feeling fades much quicker than it used to, it’s not as powerful as in the past.

I knew absolutely no one at that function, yet I went anyway. That was a big step for me! I don’t do well in crowds unless I can focus on just a few people, and the 2 that I spoke with made my visit worthwhile. The last few years have been full of things I couldn’t bring myself to do in the past. I’ve pushed myself into uncomfortable situations to help overcome the urge to be a complete recluse. It’s not really people I dislike but society as a whole. I think modern culture has been drawn down into a world of selfishness and disdain for anything that doesn’t fit what some call “Social Justice” or some other such tripe. I believe all people should be treated fairly but I feel we may be straying a little to far “Left” for my tastes.

But enough of that, the last thing I want to do in litter this blog with politics. Soon I will separate myself as much as possible from all that and live the way I want, within bounds of reason, away from the society I am not comfortable in. I will surround myself with all the things that come naturally to this earth, and try and bring to you all that I experience through words and pictures. Check out this story I found on the web by a couple who sailed along Maine’s coast. Fantastic pictures and writing!  Sailing The Maine Coast

Here’s another PS: I did something Friday that I had been thinking about for years, but never had the nerve! This is just the beginning with alot more to come!

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I must be crazy!!!

It’s Not Having What You Want, It’s Wanting What You’ve Got

My friend the communist
Holds meetings in his RV
I can’t afford his gas
So I’m stuck here watching tv

I don’t have digital
I don’t have diddly squat
It’s not having what you want
It’s wanting what you’ve got

I’m gonna soak up the sun
I’m gonna tell everyone
To lighten up, I’m gonna tell ’em that
I’ve got no one to blame
For every time I feel lame
I’m looking up

I’m gonna soak up the sun
I’m gonna soak up the sun

I’ve got a crummy job
It don’t pay near enough
To buy the things it takes
To win me some of your love

Every time I turn around
I’m looking up, you’re looking down
Maybe something’s wrong with you
That makes you act the way you do

I’m gonna soak up the sun
I’m gonna tell everyone
To lighten up, I’m gonna tell ’em that
I’ve got no one to blame
For every time I feel lame
I’m looking up

I’m gonna soak up the sun
While it’s still free
I’m gonna soak up the sun
Before it goes out on me

Don’t have no master suite
But I’m still the king of me
You have a fancy ride, but baby
I’m the one who has the key

Every time I turn around
I’m looking up, you’re looking down
Maybe something’s wrong with you
That makes you act the way you do
Maybe I am crazy too

I’m gonna soak up the sun
I’m gonna tell everyone
To lighten up, I’m gonna tell ’em that
I’ve got no one to blame
For every time I feel lame
I’m looking up

I’m gonna soak up the sun
Got my 45 on
So I can rock on

Soak Up The Sun – Sheryl Crow

I’m making it my life’s goal to only want what I’ve got, and nothing more. Constantly wanting something more, as our consumer based society reinforces, is nothing but an endless circle of want and lust for more. Never are you truly satisfied because more shiny objects are placed before you by the ad agency’s that entice us from an early age. Each object is made so poorly in an effort to facilitate it’s easy demise and replacement. How is a pickup truck that won’t last any longer than one of five years ago worth twice as much? It’s not, you just fall for the shiny object.

So why is that? It’s called “Instant Gratification” and a few other psychological factors. The excitement of buying something new is so powerful, almost a physical high when you drive off the lot in a new car. The smell of a new leather jacket, the feel of new gloves. A new piece of furniture, the latest smartphone. There was nothing wrong with the “Old” ones, but this is the latest! Sucker!!! All manufacturers count on your knee jerk reactions to the latest and greatest. The Iphone 6 to the 7 has very little change, yet you have to get it. That’s another $700.00 down the drain. Dumbass!

The sailboat I bought is 43 years old! That’s right, it’s older than many of my followers! If you look closely it has many scratches, it needs paint and the systems are not working properly. By the time I am done fixing everything will have invested at least $25,000 not including the purchase price. I will have more invested than it’s worth when I’m done, so why? Because when I’m done I’ll have exactly what I want, not some shiny new boat that will lose it’s luster just as fast but at 4 times the cost! That’s right, a new 30 foot boat with all the gear I will have would cost over $100,000! No thanks.

No, my life is going to change drastically starting tomorrow. First thing in the morning, after a dental visit, I am going to Probate Court in the county I live in to start the procedure of legally changing my name. Sounds pretty drastic right? Well let me give you some background. There are 2 people in the state of Maine with the same exact name and same exact birth date, and I’m one of them! That’s right, exactly the same.

I have had my license revoked, my car impounded and my credit destroyed several times in my adult life due to the confusion of me with the other person. We even applied for the same job at the same time once! (He got the job!) I have thought long and hard about this, I even asked my mother if she was ok with changing my name. I think it’s time for this and more in my life. It’s time for a complete change.

Along with this I am going to start a new blog, and when that’s done I will completely delete this one. Every post, comment and follower. This blog has been nothing short of therapy for me. I have shown the world all of my inner self, exposed all my secrets, put forth every demon torturing my soul. Through it all I have met some incredible people, found friends I didn’t think were out there. Even though we have never actually met, I feel your presence when you comment and like my posts, and I thank you.

But don’t worry, I will provide the new address when the time comes, and I think I know the chosen few who will follow me again. I think we all know most of our “Follows” are nothing but people trying to entice a follow from us. They never like or comment other than the first visit then evaporate into the ether of the web. I always look at their blogs, and follow if I’m interested, but most are not what interests me so I move on. I truly only follow about 8 others, and you know who you are.

I think I have reached the turning point in my life, the moment when I can let go of the past and embrace the future I will pursue with my whole heart and mind. I’m going to soak up the sun, tell everyone to lighten up, and enjoy what I’ve got which is nothing more than I need to live a fulfilling life.

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So Quiet But I Finally Woke Up

Sometimes I feel like I’m drunk behind the wheel
the wheel of possibility
However it may roll, give it a spin
See if you can somehow factor in
You know there’s always more than one way
to say exactly what you mean to say

Was I out of my head or was I out of my mind?
How could I have ever been so blind?
I was waiting for an indication, it was hard to find
Don’t matter what I say, only what I do
I never mean to do bad things to you
So quiet but I finally woke up
If you’re sad then it’s time you spoke up too

Was I out of my head or was I out of my mind?
How could I have ever been so blind?
I was waiting for an indication, it was hard to find
Don’t matter what I say, only what I do
I never mean to do bad things to you
So quiet but I finally woke up
If you’re sad then it’s time you spoke up too

Was I out of my head or was I out of my mind?
How could I have ever been so blind?
I was waiting for an indication, it was hard to find
Don’t matter what I say, only what I do
I never mean to do bad things to you
So quiet but I finally wake up
If you’re sad then it’s time you spoke up too

Outta My Head – Fastball

Today was another day for a ride along the coast of Maine. I left Bangor at 4:30 this morning and drove to Ellsworth then north on US 1 all the way to Calais. I needed to clear my head after a difficult week of driving, and the beauty of the coast never fails to inspire.

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It’s fun to think I am looking at the same picture the earliest explorers looked at hundreds of years ago. The only thing different now is the presence of man made homes and docks. All the inlets, coves, islands and mud flats are unchanged. The above picture could be the vision of the first explorer to set foot on that beach. The presence of man brings new things, but still in harmony with nature.

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Many of these inlets may have filled in some with silt, but all it takes is one big storm to wash it back out. The ebb and flow of the ocean tides cleanse the coast and provide for all the flora and fauna that thrive here.

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As I roll along I feel my shoulders settle, my neck loosen. I smell the salt air and watch the birds fly over the flats. It’s so quiet but I finally woke up to the fact that I must have been blind to not realize before now, just how much I can see and do for almost no money. There are so many places to see and touch, smell and hear. I think about my former plans of a house or land, my little slice of the earth and I understand how narrow that goal is. Why limit yourself to just a small view?

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There is so much more I can see from the deck of a boat. Every day I can have a different view, every day I can turn the page in my book of life and add a new photo. Every day I can feel the joy of discovery, feel just like a child again.

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Can you see yourself anchored in this harbor, rowing the dingy to shore to go to the local Farmers Market for fresh vegetables and fruit, buy some fish caught just today right from the boat that caught it? A minimalist lifestyle can be had, and a much better life can be lived if your willing to do what it takes.

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This sea otter lives a life free from the daily grind we all face, so why can’t we? Alone or with friends he go’s where he want’s, when he want’s. So why can’t we? The answer is…we can, and I will! Imagine anchoring in this quiet cove. Nothing but the wind and the gentle sway of the boat. What is that kind of peaceful lifestyle worth?

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Nothing in life is free, nothing should be taken for granted. So many people work so hard for their retirement only to get sick or even die before they can enjoy life after work. Many others can’t stop working for fear of losing everything they worked so hard for. If you have almost nothing, you have almost nothing to lose I say. If my boat sank, I could work and buy another. If you lost your house at age 60, could you afford to buy another?

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The sunset of my life is coming, my body is not as resilient as it used to be. I can’t read a book without glasses, but I can rebuild a diesel engine. I can’t run a 5k race, but I can row a dingy and sail a sailboat. Ones worth in this world is not only measured by their physical prowess or their degrees earned in collage, but by their ability to fend for themselves. The founders of this country came here with minimal tools and supplies, the rest they had to come up with on their own. It may have been very hard by today’s standards, but they understood what it took to live a minimalist lifestyle, and I will do the same.

The sweat on my brow and the blisters on my hands are the price I will pay for my lifestyle of choice. I will have many more years of that currency with which to pursue my goals, live the dream before I am too old. My book of life will be filled with joy and laughter, sorrow and tears. A balance of each is my goal if I can help it. We shall see.

PS: I had lunch in Calais at a small diner in town and met Katalin. We had a great conversation and she reminded me of a former post about exceptional people, of which she is one. The story of your boys giving you a ring and saying you were married to them was so endearing it made my heart melt. I told you when I sailed up the coast in a year or two I would stop by again and take you and your two sons out for a sail. And yes Katalin, I will show up, but I was lying to you a little. I don’t often include two songs in one post, but this song is what I felt when I drove back to Bangor.

 

 

Sometimes Goodbye Is A Second Chance

My eyes are open wide
By the way
I made it through the day
I watch the world outside
By the way
I’m leaving out today

I just saw Haley’s comet, shooting
She waved, said, “Why are you always running in place”
Even the man in the moon disappeared
Somewhere in the stratosphere

Tell my mother, tell my father
I have done the best I can
To make them realize
This is my life
I hope they understand
I’m not angry, I’m just saying
Sometimes goodbye is a second chance

Please don’t cry one tear for me
I’m not afraid of what I have to say
This is my one and only voice
So listen close it’s only for today

I just saw Haley’s comet, she waved
She waved, said, “Why are you always running in place”
Even the man in the moon disappeared
Somewhere in the stratosphere

Tell my mother, tell my father
I have done the best I can
To make them realize
This is my life
I hope they understand
I’m not angry, I’m just saying
Sometimes goodbye is a second chance

Here is my chance
This is my chance

Tell my mother, tell my father
I have done the best I can
To make them realize
This is my life
I hope they understand
I’m not angry, I’m just saying
Sometimes goodbye is a second chance

Sometimes goodbye is a second chance
Sometimes goodbye is a second chance

Second Chance – Shinedown

I’ve said goodbye to many things in my life, some good some bad. Through it all I felt a deep need to let go of anything that reminded me of situations I never want to repeat, choices that led to despair. People that unintentionally dragged me down, some that tried to help. Many people I had known for decades…I wonder if they miss me? Thoughts like this can make me second guess my actions. Were they to harsh? To abrupt? I made the best choices I could at the time, and there’s no going back.

Like the young woman in this song I thought I knew what was best for me, what road I should go down. Will she pass the audition, or will she come back home? Will her parents still be mad, or will they be happy to see her? Many times I was led astray, but my folks were always happy to see me come back. I can’t thank them enough for their support through it all.

The passing of my father has left a deep scar on me. That scar comes from my regret for letting petty and insignificant feelings interfere with my relationship with him. I knew I was wrong, yet I couldn’t let go of my inner child. Now it’s too late to make amends so I will have to live with what I did. Watching him die the way he did was so totally horrifying. I still see him lying there, so weak and gaunt. That image is burned into my memory forever. If we could talk right now, I’m sure he would forgive me, I just have to forgive myself, and that will take some time. If your listening Dad, I’m truly sorry.

When you read this mom I just want you to know how much I care. I was very lost for a long time, but I always listened to your words of wisdom, even if it took years for it to sink in. A piece of you and dad will be with me all the rest of my life. Your strength of will and dads willingness to work hard and provide for his family is part of who I am, part of what makes me keep going even when I feel down. Even though I will have to say goodbye to you also, hold your head high knowing you leave behind a son who will never forget how much you did for me and many others.

I’m hoping all my goodbyes give me a second chance. A chance to get it right, find some peace for my weary back and my aching heart. I’m searching for an answer to the question of worth, trying to place a value on the remainder of my life. What can I do that will be remembered? And who do I want to remember it? I will make my mark on this earth, however small, and if only one person see’s it and remembers me, I will have accomplished something real.

I just saw Haley’s comet, she waved
She waved, said, “Why are you always running in place”
Even the man in the moon disappeared
Somewhere in the stratosphere

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Home Sweet Home

You know I’m a dreamer
But my heart’s of gold
I had to run away high
So I wouldn’t come home low

Just when things went right
It doesn’t mean they were always wrong
Just take this song and you’ll never feel
Left all alone

Take me to your heart
Feel me in your bones
Just one more night
And I’m comin’ off this

Long and winding road
I’m on my way
I’m on my way
Home sweet home

Tonight tonight
I’m on my way
I’m on my way
Home sweet home

You know that I’ve seen
Too many romantic dreams
Up in lights, fallin’ off
The silver screen

My heart’s like an open book
For the whole world to read
Sometimes nothing keeps me together
At the seams

I’m on my way
I’m on my way
Home sweet home
Tonight tonight

I’m on my way
Just set me free
Home sweet home
Home sweet home
Home sweet home
Home sweet home

I’m on my way
I’m on my way
Home sweet home
Yeah yeah

I’m on my way
Just set me free
Home sweet home

Home Sweet Home – Motley Crue

 

It’s a quiet evening in Bangor Maine tonight. 65 degrees, a light wind and the sun is setting, a perfect end to a perfect Maine summer day. And yet, as beautiful as it is, I don’t feel at home. In fact I think the only time in my adult life I even felt close was when I was taking care of my folks while living in Strong Maine back20140712_051117 (Large) when I started this blog. Even though there was much stress, I was comfortable and felt in control for the first time in a long time. If my father had not progressed into dementia so fast I think we would be there still.

Western Maine is so peaceful and quaint nestled in the mountains and pine forests. All the small towns each had a presence about them, a feeling unspoken as you drive through. Always a sense of the history of years past in the statues to lost soldiers, remembrances of those who fought the good fight for their family and country. Kids riding bicycles on the sidewalks, standing in line for ice cream from the local parlor on Saturday nights. Everything small town life was supposed to be.

IMG_0419 (Large)Every summer day mom and dad would sit on the back deck with the birds and wild rabbits, every evening I cooked dinner for us and felt I was giving back to the people who had given so much to me. That time will stand out in my mind till the day I die as one of the best, most fulfilling times of my life. Tears are running down my face as I type this because I wanted to do so much more for them but time ran out. There’s only so much in this world you can control, and my fathers health was not one of them. My last day at this house was very hard indeed and I wrote about it here.

b (2) (Large)Mom is doing well at my sisters home and I can’t thank her enough for her efforts. I know full well how hard it can be to care for a loved one full time, I had two! I tell her often how much I and the family appreciate her efforts and I hope she finds her peace in the end. We all have to face the passing of those older than us that we care about, and we each in our own way make our peace with it.

The title of this post and the song from which it came represents a moment captured in time for me. When this album came out I was 23 and had just moved to Dallas Texas to try and connect with my oldest brother I had not seen since I was 15. This was the first time I had left Maine for any length of time and I stayed there for over a year. As my relationship with my brother fell apart I felt the pull of Maine, the only home I knew then, and I came back. I never saw him again. He had his life and it didn’t seem to work with mine. He doesn’t even know our father has died, and I don’t know if he ever will.

Now as a mature adult, free from my past, I find I’m still looking for home sweet home. This one idea has been so elusive, so ghostly in it’s appearance. Like a puff of smoke on a foggy day I can’t seem to get hold of it and bring it into focus, find the magic that makes any one moment or place fulfill the dream. Perhaps I am at fault, trying too hard for the perfect vision placed in my mind by others who seemed to have found it. I’m not sure, but I think I am going in the right direction. I think it may just be a state of mind.

 

 

 

 

Leave Tonight Or Live And Die This Way

You got a fast car
I want a ticket to anywhere
Maybe we make a deal
Maybe together we can get somewhere

Anyplace is better
Starting from zero got nothing to lose
Maybe we’ll make something
But me myself I got nothing to prove

You got a fast car
And I got a plan to get us out of here
I been working at the convenience store
Managed to save just a little bit of money
We won’t have to drive too far
Just ‘cross the border and into the city
You and I can both get jobs
And finally see what it means to be living

You see my old man’s got a problem
He live with the bottle that’s the way it is
He says his body’s too old for working
I say his body’s too young to look like his
My mama went off and left him
She wanted more from life than he could give
I said somebody’s got to take care of him
So I quit school and that’s what I did

You got a fast car
But is it fast enough so we can fly away
We gotta make a decision
We leave tonight or live and die this way

I remember we were driving driving in your car
The speed so fast I felt like I was drunk
City lights lay out before us
And your arm felt nice wrapped ’round my shoulder
And I had a feeling that I belonged
And I had a feeling I could be someone, be someone, be someone

You got a fast car
And we go cruising to entertain ourselves
You still ain’t got a job
And I work in a market as a checkout boy
I know things will get better
You’ll find work and I’ll get promoted
We’ll move out of the shelter
Buy a big house and live in the suburbs

I remember we were driving driving in your car
The speed so fast I felt like I was drunk
City lights lay out before us
And your arm felt nice wrapped ’round my shoulder
And I had a feeling that I belonged
And I had a feeling I could be someone, be someone, be someone

You got a fast car
And I got a job that pays all our bills
You stay out drinking late at the bar
See more of your friends than you do of your kids
I’d always hoped for better
Thought maybe together you and me would find it
I got no plans I ain’t going nowhere
So take your fast car and keep on driving

I remember we were driving driving in your car
The speed so fast I felt like I was drunk
City lights lay out before us
And your arm felt nice wrapped ’round my shoulder
And I had a feeling that I belonged
And I had a feeling I could be someone, be someone, be someone

You got a fast car
But is it fast enough so you can fly away
You gotta make a decision
You leave tonight or live and die this way

Fast Car – Tracy Chapman

My life to date can be summed up in three words….Mistakes, disappointment and compromise.  Of those three I think compromise has the least sting and the most promise for a better future. Mick Jagger was right when he wrote “You can’t always get what you want. But if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need.”  One can hope for this or that, wish for a lottery win or rich unknown uncle, but I feel the only way to achieve a better life is first, knowing what it is you really want, then setting realistic goals that YOU can complete to reach your dream. Help from others is nice and appreciated, but you can’t count on it.

Winterport 1861
Winterport 1861

I took a drive through Winterport Maine this morning waiting for the grocery store to open. As I drove the small streets by the Penobscot River I felt a deep connection to the small cottages by the shore and the overall feel of small town Maine. I felt that old familiar pull of wanting to live in a small house by the sea, wondering what it would have been like to grow up years ago in such a small town. Images of summers by the shore, a one room school, Fourth of July parades and Fire Dept. BBQ’s by the station. Saturday night bean suppers at the Grange hall, the local church bells ringing on Sunday. All the things that make Maine my home.

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Big storms over North Yarmouth

Yesterday my brother and I took my mom over to Yarmouth for pizza “with her boys” and on the way we stopped by my boat so my brother could have a look. Again, I felt a rush of excitement knowing this was my future, a home no one could take away from me. Was it the boat I really wanted? No. But that’s the thing about compromise, You were right Mick, I’m getting what I need if not what I want.

I understand now that I am never going to be able to afford a house by the sea, but I can experience everything else that comprises all the things that make up life in a small coastal town, without the property taxes! I can attend the summer festival, buy food from a local farm stand, talk local politics at the country store, breath in the salt air every morning. Most of the things I want can come true with a little compromise.

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Boothbay Harbor Maine

I also reflect back on all the places I have lived, so many now I have lost count. At one time I did own some land in Sebec Maine, and as beautiful as it was I still felt an urge to travel. I seem to get bored after a couple years staying in one place, the 1800’s mountain man in me is pulled to greener pastures, cleaner springs.When I think it through, buying a boat rather than a house gives me the opportunity to be that mountain man, just on the sea instead. I can balance the travel bug in me with the want of small town life. Freedom comes in many forms if one bothers to look at all options.

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Rocky Mountains in Colorado

Years ago when I drove through Colorado I was overwhelmed with the complete majesty of the Rockies. I thought of miners living in a shack, panning in a stream hoping for the “Big Strike” that would give them all the things they felt were needed for a better life, only to find nothing but hardship and even death for their efforts. Trying to live your life on a hope and a dream no longer makes sense to me. Better to find the happy medium, compromise a little now before it’s too late. If I waited for enough money for a larger boat, tried to save for a down payment on a house, I don’t think I would ever reach a stable existence before I was to old to enjoy it. Leave tonight or live and die this way…that’s dam straight!

April May And September

Years have passed, the memory true
I still carry the vision of you
I remember still, our trip to the hill
The blowing snow and the winter chill

A fleeting love I thought was true
Alas, it was not felt by you
You let me go from your embrace
Yet I close my eyes, and see your face

Your name like spring, fresh and new
The memory today came back anew
I still miss you after all these years
So long has passed, I have no tears

April May and September
Its still your face I remember
Is it you I miss so much
Or just the sense of a loving touch