MAINE: my final frontier. These are the voyages of the Scooter Vespa 250 i.e. Super. Its continuing mission - to explore America's most heavily forested state - to roam the vast coastline, numberless lakes, and mighty mountains. To boldly go where no scooter has gone before!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Lost in my own backyard -again

This is my first post since Mike and I got lost on our way to a lake three weeks ago. It's been a miserable month so far - my body feels sorry for itself and refuses to move. I'd been out for a couple of brief rides, nothing longer than a dozen miles. So when Mike suggested a ride down the coast, I told my body that I was going out - with or without it.

After meeting in for coffee at a newly opened coffee shop called "The Speckled Axe," we checked Mike's map for the best route to Gooch's Beach in Kennebunkport and roared out of town. This is my part of Maine. I know my way around the coast.

Mike is pointing at his map and wondering why we aren't at the beach. (Does this photo like familiar? Check out my May 1 post, "Just three inches off.")

But - Hallelujah! - just a few hours later, Mike is pointing to the sea on the map - with said sea in the background!

This is something one can't do along the coast after Memorial Day. The traffic is slow but very heavy, and the middle of the road just isn't safe. It's really not safe now, but remember, Mike's from New York City ...

We talked with this gentleman, who rode a Vespa L50. Note that the dog basket isn't secured to the scooter.

And check out the footwear! Well, at least the dog seemed quite pleased to be out and about.

This dog, on the other hand, was expressing his disgust loudly. "Throw the damn stick, one of you -why else did you drag me here?"

So, the damn stick was thrown, retrieved, returned, and the process was repeated endlessly

This young lady caught our eye. She seemed to be dancing in the surf 

and enjoying herself immensely

For a moment, she rested as the sea gulls gathered around her. When she returned to her car, we walked down to speak with her; she'd parked quite close to us. (Alright, maybe not close, but within my walking range - barely.)

"Are you a dancer," I asked. "No," she replied. "Well, we watched you in the surf. You looked like a dancer." She smiled very nicely (why didn't my "charm" work 45 years ago?) and explained the reason for her activity.

"I was just trying to keep my music out of the water," she said, as she demonstrated her dance steps.

We stopped at the "Rock and Roll Cafe" in Scarborough for lunch. I am reflected in the mirror in the upper left-hand corner, snapping the photo.. Mike's a tad glum here, as he pondered why he needed my help in ordering a drink.

He asked the waitress for a "malted." She asked, "A malted what? "A malted," Mike repeated.

The young lady looked completely baffled. "He wants a milkshake," I told her. "Oh. O.K. - a milkshake," perhaps relieved that this was going to be a short conversation after all.

I've saved the most unpleasant photo for the end. Mike has a cell phone with GPS, which recorded our little ride to the beach. It should have been a nearly straight line from Portland to Gooch's Beach. It wasn't.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Just Three Inches Off

What happens when an old scooterer from New York City who can read a map and an old scooterer from Maine who can spell map plan a ride through the back roads of Maine?

They get lost, of course!

When Mike(  and I recently rode around southern Maine, with Mike's map safely ensconced in plastic, I confidently and cluelessly rode about 20 miles off course.

As Mike indicates with his forefinger where we should be and puts his thumb where we actually were, I pointed out that it wasn't so bad - we were only three inches off.

We stopped for a rest in beautiful downtown Ross's Corner.

Another view of Ross's Corner

A few miles west, or east - well, some distance from Ross's Corner, we came upon the new-fangled way of collecting maple sap: rather than buckets hung under taps on hundreds of maples, tubes run from tree to tree right into the sap house. Certainly easier, but not at all Mainely.

I can imagine some old Maine farmer selling this property to a foolish buyer from away: "Yessah, got plenty of maples he'ah, but the best ones - the ones that'll give ya the most syrup - are those pretty little furry maples, like that one I got tapped right out they'ah."