“Gray is the color of Maine’s November.
Gunmetal skies, rain or spitting snow. In the
North Country the slush runs have begun on the rivers;
the back ponds are caught. There is snow calf-deep
in the high country. The snowshoe rabbit is
changing his coat from brown to winter-white.” ----
Mainers In Exile and Friends of Maine
It’s been a while since we’ve written a Maine
Exiles NewsFrom Home Letter. Much has happened.
The store in Freeport closed and we are now growing
accustomed to the joys and frustrations of operating in
cyberspace. The frustration is that we miss the
visits in person with all who stopped in at the store to
say hello and share stories about a favorite Maine place
or book or recipe or event or experience. The joy
is that we now have a way to share those favorites with
an audience spread out around the world. And so do
you. We invite you to email us about all those
wonderful finds and anecdotes that you so generously
shared in the store. We’ll pass them along
through this NewsFromHome Letter and on the Maine Exiles
website at www.exiles.com
First snow of the season here. We all awoke to a
dusting of snow on the fields and in the back of the
pickup, and a very chilly 20 degrees. Snow will
probably be gone by noon if the sun stays out, but it
serves to get us in the mood for the holidays just
around the corner. The folks up in Presque Isle
have apparently been getting ready for a while and
already have enough snow to plow. Take
Band goes www
Speaking of the holidays around the
corner, have you been looking high, low, and in between
for Wicked Good Band tapes and CD’s for holiday gifts?
The Wicked Good Guys only play a few fairs and festivals
each year, and until now haveonly sold their
merchandise at those live performances. Seemed a
shame to make Wicked Good Band fans go without their
favorite Maine musical satire the rest of the year, so
we struck a deal and helped launch the Official
UN-Official Wicked Good Band website at www.wickedgoodband.com
. Now you can order their tapes, CD’s, and video
online, through the secure e-commerce system of Maine
Exiles. And wonder of wonders! You can also order
their official Wicked Good Band tee shirts, previously
available only from the Band Van after a show.
Great stocking stuffers. Make
it a Wicked Good Christmas!
A couple of weeks ago, Maine author John Gould
celebrated several truly remarkable milestones in his
life. He turned 94, began his 71st year of
marriage to the lovely Dorothy, and was questioned and
congratulated by fans from around the world via an
online chat. For countless readers, John's books
and essays have been their first introduction to Maine
and the joys of life Down East. He
literally wrote the book -- Maine Lingo --
the primary reference for authentic usage and derivation
for much of what we consider the real Maine language
---- “Begin with B” to “Wreck Island”.
His total of thirty books give insight into the events
and customs that have molded the Maine so beloved by so
John’s essays have appeared in The Christian
Science Monitor every week since October 21, 1942 .
Owen Thomas, his editor there, said of John, “He’s a
good storyteller. His stories are based in Maine,
but they speak to universals, I think. If you
think Maine is friendly and open and humorous --- those
are all qualities of his writing. And they all
Treat yourself to the writings of John Gould today, online
at The Monitor, and bookmark it so you can get there
each Friday with no waiting.
gifts for friends and family in Exile? Visit the Maine
Exiles online store for our own logoed
items and lots of very special treasures that
celebrate the spirit of Maine. Rumor has it that
this is where Santa finds the best gifts for Maine
Exiles who have been nice. Wicked nice.
We were out wandering around looking for good
foliage pictures last week. It was getting cold
and dark – that happens about 3:45pm now with the time
change – and found ourselves on Rt 4 in Hollis,
right there at the Salmon Falls Library.
Followed the smell of woodsmoke just past the building and
discovered a little treasure of a teahouse beside the
Saco River. Aunt Bea’s Gift Baskets & Tea
House serves tea, coffee and pastries in front of the
fire with all the cozy charm of yesterday and long ago.
Which is not surprising since this little teahouse by
the river has been operating since the 1940’s.
This is one of those wonderful “finds” in Maine,
tucked away in a picture perfect setting, carrying on a
tradition that has been delighting customers season
after season. Visit them Wed thru Sun 11-5 or call
207 929-3888 to reserve a table in front of the
And what’s been going on in the
kitchen here at Exiles Central you ask? Pumpkins,
pumpkins everywhere. Dwight was in charge of
soliciting and gathering pumpkins donated for the
carving contest at the Middle School. The weather
had been so warm going into Halloween that he waited
till the last day to collect them, wanting the firmest possible.
After the third pickup truck load, it was clear that
Dwight’s powers of persuasion had been proven beyond
all reasonable doubt, and it worked out to about 9
pumpkins per carver at the school.
We sent Dwight over to his Aunt Dottie’s kitchen for
some pumpkin recipes and got the usual pumpkin bread,
pumpkin muffins, pumpkin spice cake, and several
versions of pumpkin pie. Here’s the pumpkin
pie we liked best. Was it because it contains
ice cream or because it doesn’t require cooking?
Both. This would be an unusual (and easy) pie for
a pot luck supper or to take to Thanksgiving dinner at
Uncle Chester's. Believe us when we say there
wasn't a crumb left of the samples we made here.
2 cups pumpkin (canned works fine)
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ginger
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
2 quarts vanilla ice cream
Combine pumpkin, sugar and spices. Stir in
softened ice cream. Spoon into chilled shell and
freeze. Makes 2 9inch pies.
3 cups gingersnap crumbs
1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar
1/2 cup melted butter or margarine
Mix and pat into 2 9 inch pie pans.
Chill about 45 minutes before adding filling.
And one last reminder. It’s time to put those
red-eyed markers in along the driveway so Biff
will know where to plow. And you’ll know where
to aim to get out to work if you have to leave
before Biff shows up. (Better get the 4 footers.
Farmer's Almanac says we're in for a real
old-fashioned winter.) Once the ground starts to
freeze you’ll break more than you don’t, trying to
pound them in. Dwight, who has made a life’s
work of procrastinating, has this tip for dealing with
frozen sod. Wait till a real cold snappy
day. Drill a hole in the ground larger than
the rod of the marker. Set the marker in the hole
and pour in water. The water will freeze and hold
the marker. This method is a trade off. It
will probably ruin a drill bit – but has the dubious
advantage of announcing the Spring thaw when one day you
look out and your driveway appears to be lined with
red-eyed drunken sailors.
NewsFromHome Letter to at least 3 Mainer-In-Exile
friends, so you can hash it over with them. For
best results, use the Forward To A Friend button (your
friends won't be added to our subscriber list unless
they choose to opt-in).
Quote from the
Maine Exiles Message Board
“I was so homesick two nights ago that I made
doughnuts. There’s something about a homemade,
crispy, hot-from-the-grease doughnut that puts a piece
of my soul right back in Grammie’s kitchen (or perhaps
a piece of Grammie’s kitchen in my soul).
10/17/02 --- Cookie, Ithaca, NY
To read more MESSAGES
FROM EXILE, visit
the message board.
There. Now it's time to go get the
mail and check on the state of the world as interpreted
by the afternoon crowd at the post office. Things
should be hopping with all the election results to
We welcome your comments and suggestions for future
Drop us a line.
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Greetings from the Maine Exiles Staff
MAINE EXILE PRODUCTS
PO Box 66851
Falmouth, ME 04105
email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
---- ayuh, on the web