Welcome to 'Attic of the Heart'!

Welcome from north-central Connecticut! In this blog I will share whatever is in my heart, on my mind, or something interesting I've found to share. Thanks for stopping by!


Friday, October 10, 2008

I just love autumn...

One of my favorite spots, about 1 mile from our house...

I just love fall. I love the colors, I love the cool crisp air, the fresh scent of pines and falling leaves. I love being able to see through the woods again, instead of the jungle we have for summer. I love all the wild flowers and vines and things that have fully matured with their seed heads, and finding neat stuff growing in the fence rows and along the edges of fields.

Except I can'
t do that right now. I don't have a field, or a fence row to explore, and that bums me out. I used to, but not where I am right now. All I can do is walk or drive by and admire someone else's.
That's the difference living here in CT as opposed to way up north. When we lived in NB, and Maine, we had so many fields, just acres and acres of potato and hay fields that the farmers didn't mind you using if you were careful. My brother has a 4-wheeler that he drives around on over 2000 acres, even though he only owns 5 of them. But that's the way it is up there. As long as you stick to the edge of the field, or wait until it's harvested. Down here, there are fields too, beautiful acres of garden crops and tobacco fields, orchards, etc., but we don't know anyone here, and there are so many no trespassing signs out there. There's just too many people, and I'm sure that the area farmers (and big conglomerates like Culbro) have had bad experiences, or just don't want to be sued in case something happens.
Sigh...So much beauty here, but you can't touch it.
My husband and I have discussed this many times. Maybe because we are relative newcomers (3 yrs here), we feel this way. We feel we don't 'own' or have a stake here. In Maine, we rented, like we do here, but for some reason, we felt a sense of 'ownership', like it was 'our state'. I took pride in living there, loved to tell people the best places to visit, what not to miss, etc. But here it's different. Why is that? When we think about going to visit places, at first it seems great - so much to see and do. Then you start thinking about the crowds, the traffic. And talk yourself out of going. I know we shouldn't, but we do. And it's kind of depressing.

Saint John River, New Brunwick, Canada - view from his Dad's camp.

My husband feels that way about fishing. He loves to fish. He has so little time for a hobby, and doesn't get much chance to go. He got out about 3 times this summer, and nearly each time was a huge disappointment. He didn't get any fish worth keeping, for one thing. Another, it seems there are so many people who have the same idea that it's hard to find your own spot. He went fishing over to Congamond Lake. Was there about 15 minutes, and a family drove up in a pickup, and proceeded to swim right where he was fishing (there is a public beach, and this definitely wasn't it). So he gave up and came home. Poor guy was so disillusioned. I felt so bad for him, as we are trying to make it work here.

Crossing the bridge in Belgrade Lakes, Maine, where we stayed in a B&B...

In Maine, much less people, much bigger state, and so many places to fish. We talk about moving back up there, but he has a good paying job here (best he's ever had), they love him, treat him good. But he works 12 hrs a day, 5 days a week, plus every other Saturday. Being in management means more is required. And he's a giver. Gives it all he's got, just like he was an owner (and more than some of them). That's his work ethic. But I'm so afraid it's aging him and wearing him out.
Maine jobs in his field are hard to come by, much less good paying ones. And he'd have to prove himself all over again. When you are over 50, you really think about that. He has tons of experience in his field (steel/metal manufacturing) an excellent work ethic (hard to find nowadays), and a huge commitment to getting things done. The 'word' out there is that if you want things done, see him.

No place is perfect. This I know, having lost count on how many times we've moved over the last 25 years. (6 states and 2 provinces so far, with over 20 moves involved). Utopia doesn't seem to exist. Either it's beautiful, and it's too expensive to live there and the people are unfriendly. OR, you trade in some of the beauty, and you have low paying jobs, but friendlier people.

Sigh. Life isn't easy, and I don't mean to complain. God has blessed us so much here. But what do you do when your heart doesn't belong here? Stay for the money? Or 'go home' and try to make it work on less? It's not an easy answer at our age. We've started over too many times. It seems to get harder each time (not to mention the physical aspect!! I got alot of stuff over 26 years of marriage!!;0))
But yet we can't see ourselves retiring here. The house payment would be huge, the property taxes are probably the highest in New England. Everything in CT is higher than most of the surrounding states. Food is generally cheaper in Maine, even though they have to ship it farther. Go figure...
I admit one of our problem is our choice of housing. We aren't city people. We both want some land. A small farm. Heck, we could get by on an acre if need be. If all we wanted was a small fixer upper house on 1/4 acre, there's plenty of that here for around $200,000. But then we think - wow! For that kind of money, we could get 5 or more acres, a farm house, barn, garage, etc in Maine! Our dream!
So....do we forget the dream, or do we move to Maine, and my dear sweetie commute on weekends home to Maine? That is what we are plotting right now. It would be hard, but when we retire, we'd have a home. Without a huge payment. Because we wouldn't have to spend that kind of money up there for our dream.
Why are things always so complicate?