Wednesday, July 30, 2014

From "Away"

There's a shorthand that the locals sometimes use, here in Maine.

If a local tells you someone is "from away" it might explain that stranger's sense of urgency, determination or downright despair (What do you mean, you've sold out of the lobster special? Can't you send someone out for more?).

For many years, I qualified for another local euphemism: I was a "summer person."  (I often quipped that I was only a real person in the summer!)  Coming here to recharge and regroup each year meant a lot of dealing with maintaining the summer camp, squirrel generations who felt as proprietary as we did, and having only summer glimpses of people we knew "since forever." Our sense of place and awareness of the briefness of our visit kept us mindful of our blessings here. Our annual migration north sustained us in many ways.

Now that I've settled in Midcoast, I know how our Meeting enjoys a summer influx of new visitors and old friends. Although this is a hectic time of year (we are often busy hosting those summer friends and family) we truly look forward to welcoming new and old friends. It delights us when others look forward to returning here in the warm days of summer, announcing themselves at the rise of Meeting and sharing where they are "from."  Welcome, Friends! Welcome back, old friends!

I've recently "been away" visiting family (so I haven't posted here lately).  But I returned just in time to help welcome two wonderful people to our Meeting family. We witnessed their marriage under the care of our Meeting!  Welcome to Liz and Petra! We all look forward to your returning again and again.