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Experts say that after you die your hair and nails continue to grow for several days; although your phone calls drop off considerably.
What made me think such cheerful thoughts was the fact that lately, my e-mails have dropped off to an almost manageable level, but I'm feeling fine, otherwise!
You see, when you host a weekly talk show and write a weekly syndicated column in a state that has over three million summer visitors a year, your e-mails increase sharply during July and August - the months when most of those three million visitors are poking around.
Here's an example of a typical summer e-mail:
“John: My wife and I just bought and read your fine book: 'Down the road a piece, A storyteller's guide to Maine' and both of us enjoyed it. We are from Indiana and are currently RVing our way through your fair state. The plan is to stay here until late-September.
Regarding the cover photo of you standing in front of the road sign with all the foreign cities and countries, I would like to know exactly where that sign is so I can drive there and take a picture with our RV and e-mail it to our friends to show them just how lost we are.
Thanks in advance, Dave Surette”
Thanks for the e-mail, Dave and I was glad to read that you enjoyed my book. At this point, Dave, I have a question of my own: Why would someone want to swap the insufferable heat, humidity and triple-digit temperatures of an Indiana summer for the warm, dry days and cool comfortable nights of Maine? Just curious.
All seriousness aside, Dave, the sign is in a part of Albany Township known as 'Lynchville' and is at the intersection of routes 5 and 35. To say it's in the middle of no where would be very close to the truth, since 'No Where,' Maine is just a few miles further north. I'm not sure why that section of Albany Township is called 'Lynchville' but I bet there's a story there. I'm just glad the story doesn't involve me.
While you're driving around taking pictures, Dave, you might want to drive over to Casco village where they've put up a roadside giving the direction and distance to Maine towns that share the names of some U.S. presidents. The list includes the towns of Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Harrison, Jackson, Van Buren, Lincoln and Clinton.
The reason I say 'share the names' is because some of the towns listed - like Lincoln and Clinton - were not named for those presidents, but were named after people with those particular names.
Years ago the selectmen of a town up north wanted to do something different so they came up with the idea of making a road sign listing Maine towns named after colors. But after a three-hour brainstorming session they realized that their sign would only include the towns of Auburn, 'Blue' Hill, Greene, possibly 'Green'-ville and 'White'-field, so they started getting discouraged.
At one point the third selectman said he heard somewhere that 'Wytopitlock' was Indian for 'magenta.' That's when the first selectman shook his head and made a motion to table the idea.
John McDonald is a humorist and storyteller who performs regularly
throughout New England. John’s e-mail address is
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