Portland, ME.

By Maggie -- Jul 14, 2014

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We hope that anyone who reads this blog is enjoying it so far (all 10 of you that read it!). Photos are fun and easy but it's sometimes hard to keep up with the writing aspect of it. Writing takes more reflection and thought than just posting photos, and usually I can't think of what to write about until we're on the road a few days later. Regardless, the goal of this blog is to keep our family and friends updated (and also, to preserve the memories for ourselves) and hopefully we'll have it to look back on one day when we're wiping baby butts and wishing we were still cruising the highway looking for adventure.  

My dad was quick to point out yesterday that I've been ending every blog post with a picture of food (Thanks, dad - good observation). When you're traveling, it's all part of the adventure, food included. We have tried to eat as the locals do on this trip, and we've surprised ourselves with how many new things we've had in the past 85 days. From "navajo tacos" to crawfish to queso to cannolis to lobster - it's been a wild ride for our digestive systems but totally worth it. 

A highlight of Maine was - you guessed it - lobstah! I always avoided crustaceans of any kind because my family and I always thought I was allergic to them. Shrimp was my nemesis, and any encounter would lead to 2 days of pure hell. I guess I have since outgrown my "allergy" because I've had crawfish and lobster on this trip and haven't gone running for the bathroom afterwards. Buying the lobster at the market then cooking it and eating it all within a couple of hours was a total eye-opening experience. It's different than fish. Fish die and then you cook them. I don't feel bad about frying up a fish. But you have to drop the poor little lobster into the water ALIVE! It's crazy. Nicole and Summer, our hosts in Portland, we're pros and did all the dirty work. We learned the best way to crack open the shell and how to dig out all of the good lobster meat. By the end of dinner our entire table was covered in shells, legs, lobster guts and butter. Perfect!

We're thankful to Nicole and Summer for being so awesome to us while we were there. Nicole is a friend of mine from high school water polo days. I've known her for almost 10 years! They took us out all over Portland to several different dive bars, out to brunch in the morning, to the lighthouses up in Cape Elizabeth, and down to a festival at the Shipyard. We met all of their friends and got a perfect taste of what it's like to live in Portland in the summertime. Winter? Meh, we'll pass.

One weird thing happened in Portland - we got robbed! Luckily it was minor, but we're still amazed at how it happened. An older guy started talking to Ryan in one of the pool bars we were at on Saturday night. He seemed fairly normal, a local drunk maybe, but really nice and friendly nonetheless. They sat down together at the table in between pool games, and Ryan offered to buy a pitcher of beer. The man said he'd go up and buy it, and Ryan gave him a $20 to pay for it. Oops! Out the front door he went, and we never saw him again, that sneaky son of a gun. Hopefully that's the worst thievery we'll encounter on this trip!