Bar Harbor, Maine

After Belfast we went to Bangor to find the place to get a Covid Test. Our plans are to head to Nova Scotia and Canada wants us to get Covid test 72 hours before we enter Canada. That is fine, we just need to find the facility to do that. As it turns out, there is a shortage of Covid tests in Maine for some reason, or so we are told. The Walgreens offer Covid tests, but they are all booked up weeks in advance. We search the internet and find the Health facility in Bangor does the tests for $100 on the spot, 15 minute results. Great sign us up.

We have a few days before our tests, so we go to Bar Harbor for some hiking and sightseeing. This weekend happens to be a holiday weekend and the campgrounds are full. Luckily we found a place and we are good for 4 nights just outside of Bar Harbor.

There is plenty of hiking to do in Bar Harbor and we wanted to make the most of it. Our goal was to hike up Cadillac Mountain. We drove up this mountain a few years ago and we now want to hike it. We only have 3 days of hiking so off we go.

But first we went to Bar Harbour to have a look around

Northward we travel, through Maine

We left Portland and travelled along the coast of Maine to a small town, Belfast. We lived in Belfast for 6 weeks a few years ago while we were in between houses.

So we stopped here again and actually remembered more about this place than we did Portland. Marina had a Coop that she like to shop at which we went to again and spent a small fortune. We did purchase a duck while we were there and at some point in the future we will grill the duck. I can’t wait.

We lived above the hardware store in town, so we went back to the hardware store to see if the lady who works there remembered us. It was a weird conversation with her. I am not sure she remembered us, or if it was even the same lady, but she certainly wasn’t interested in our conversation.

Portland, ME! What a view from the overnight stay

While we were in Vermont, we visited some boater friends, Sheri an d Roark. We met them in Marathon, FL when we first crossed to The Bahamas in 2013. We travelled with them for quite some time and met up again with them in Vermont a few times as well.

Our next stop is Portland, ME. Once again we are driving across states to visit friends, boater friends as well.

“OZ”

Jean and Mark we met at Sunset Bay Marina, Stuart, FL. They were always ready to have a drink with us. Great People.

When we met in Portland that was no exception. We went downtown and found a restaurant where we spent the evening talking and drinking, as far as I remember.

The next day our friends left early and we had the day to walk around town. We had been to Portland before, but we could not recognize anything.

This was our last scheduled stop that we have in our itinerary. So far our trip since we left Florida has been, go here to meet friends and family. But this is the last of our friends heading in the northern direction.

After walking around town and trying to find a place that we remembered from our prior visit here a few years back, we decided to move a little further north.

The Plymouth Cheese Corp. This is not Cabot Cheese.

So we have heard all about it, talked about it, saw it on the shelf in HEB and now we have come to find it, Vermont Cheese.

We drove by several road signs that mention, “Fresh Eggs, Fruits, Veges, Cukes, Cheese”, but those damn signs are always right on at the facility driveway. When you are dong 50 mph down winding country roads, this bus cannot just do a 90 degree turn into a driveway. But Plymouth Cheese was better setup. They had a sign about a 1/2 mile before the entrance, so we were able to slow this beast down and find the Cheese factory.

Plymouth, VT is a very tiny tourist hot spot. There are 3 barns filled with antiques and a cheese factory. Mind you this is no ordinary cheese factory, this is not Cabot Cheese.

We parked our rig in the parking lot next to the chickens, pigs or goats and tried to get those animals to come and visit us. That was a futile effort, they were busy eating. Then we attempted to get into the Plymouth Cheese Corp, but we were turned around because did not have masks. We forgot our masks in the bus, so we went back, masked up and viola she let us in.

There wasn’t much conversation with the receptionist and us during the early part of our 5 minute stay in the factory. We walked around and took some pics of the cheese fabrication plant. All nice and stainless steel and large containers. They were not making cheese right now because, I don’t know, probably wrong time of the year. Nevertheless, we then proceeded to the counter to ask some questions. This is where things we sideways.

In my unlimited ability to ask the annoying questions, I proceeded with, “Do you like Cabot Cheese?” Unbeknownst to me, Cabot is pronounced with the T at the end, not as a French word as I did. She was confused and looked at me with an odd look of I have never heard of that cheese, so I tried again, pronouncing it the same way. A few seconds later she sternly says, “Oh, Cabot!”, with the T pronounced.

I figured she would have an answer for this question. Oh boy, I hit a hot spot. As her blood pressure started to rise and her lips tightened up, she glared at me then down and the counter and politely bellowed something to the respect of , Cabot is industrial mass produced Cheese. That is milk that is pasteurized and then the ingredients are added back into the cheese.” “Our cheese is not pasteurized. We make everything right here.”, and she went on and so did I.

I asked another question, “Where is the salsa?”. “To the left!” The answers were getting short now. I seemed to have expressed my ignorance in Cheese. I could tell from her responses that she has answered these questions 1000 times before.

I then said, “I like cheddar, do you have any?” She then said “all our cheeses are cheddar.” And then quickly stated the cheeses are on the shelf, there were several different kinds and the labels describe the each cheese. So, I proceeded to read the labels, the labels stated how long they were aged, the name of the cheese and maybe the prominent ingredient in each cheese. So not really what I was hoping for. I was expecting a more verbose description, so I asked her some more questions.

One cheese had truffles in it, I asked what are truffles? She smiled! This was the first smile we have seen from her. Marina jumped in and explained to me they were mushrooms.

We proceeded to put several blocks of cheese on the counter and some salsa, paid for the products and said thanks and as we were packing our things up and saying goodbye, she said, “You made my day”. and she smiled! It was an unbelievable sight.