It’s Maine, it’s cold, and we complain about it. Sure I bitch and moan like everyone else about the cost of heating oil, shoveling, having to bundle up and all the other drudgery we have to deal with during the winter months. However, I love to ski and skate, and if I could afford a snowmobile, I’d be riding that to no end. Ice fishing, and winter camping is a little extreme for me, so I guess I am in the middle of the spectrum of heartiness.
A snowbank faces a field off Route 132 in Monmouth at Clemedow Farms
The raw beauty of the season and the challenge of living through it makes us hearty Mainers able to deal with all the other hardships in life, and appreciate what we do have. I am lucky to have a job that sends me out to document this.
Nick Cote of Auburn flies through a gate during Sunday afternoon’s Maine Ski Challenge Race at Lost Valley Ski Area in Auburn. Cote had the fastest run of the day with competitors ranging from 6-60 years old that compete in the weekly racing series for different age categoires for skiers and snowboarders. The series is open to the public every Sunday at 1:00 for a minimal charge with a valid lift ticket.
Chloe Roldan, 3, of Summer Street in Auburn, tastes snowflakes as they fall Wednesday morning while walking down Whitney Street with her father.
Austin Powell, 8, of Turner, runs to find a better spot on the hill while sledding in Turner next to the Calvary Baptist Church
Cy Wilkinson, from Auburn Parks and Recreation Department, prepares the Walton Field skating rink for the start of Auburn’s annual Winter Festival Friday morning.
There is no doubt I am a townie. Born, raised, vowed to leave as a teen, and now raising a family here in LA-East Coast. It is, however, a blessing in that it makes my job wicked easy with so many connections. I got a call over the weekend, actually a facebook message, from Bob Callier, a Lewiston firefighter I have known forever. His wife Bridget is a hoot and has been a source for many a story, and good enough to hire me to take their son’s senior photos a couple years back. I digress.
Bob called about a story idea he thought might be interesting for our newspaper readers, and help unearth some extra money for a fundraiser. Click here to check out the video I shot and uploaded earlier today.
My iPad mini came today and I had to take a photo to show it off. Sitting with the company big Mac and little Macbook is the little gem that my ever so humble and quiet colleague, insert laugh here, and friend, Amber Waterman, liberated when I was not looking. She left me something to remember her by for the next few weeks while she will be gone on medical leave. She is having some non emergency surgery. We will miss her.
The drive to Richmond to shoot boys and girls basketball seemed to take forever. While Class D basketball lacks the skill and finesse of Class A, it certainly makes for great photos with all the diving for loose balls.
With Amber out on medical leave and Jose Leiva being laid off last week, it is just Daryn Slover and me for the next few weeks. I have another week to go until my next day off, and three of those days I will be the only staff photographer working. If you see my wife and kids, tell them I miss them.
I just realized I have not posted anything in my blog since fall. Talk about slacking. I was reminded of this Sunday when I opened the paper and saw the mystery photo. I remember the day I took the photo, my last work day before going on two weeks vacation, and saying to myself how ironic this photo was since the statue represented a legend about a moose that was so struck with the beauty of the River Valley that it was distracted by it and fell over a cliff to it’s death. About 15 minutes after taking this photo, I was scoping out another mystery photo on the banks of a stream and I too nearly fell to my death, or at least a trip to the hospital.
It was a cold morning and while it had not rained or snowed, the mist from the falls above had made the smooth concrete on the support for the bridge very slippery, even though it looked dry. I was not paying much attention to where I was walking as it looked safe enough. I was taken by the beauty of the falls and the the church steeple above when I stepped onto the slick concrete sloping down. The second I stepped on it, my feet went out from under me and I slid down about 10 feet to within inches of the edge. About a 25 foot drop below with jagged rocks and rushing water awaited. I rolled over and carefully stood up. Heart beating, the first thing I thought of was how lucky I was and had this feeling that my mother was looking out for me from the heavens above. I shivered. My elbow and hip hurt, and I felt a little dizzy. My vision was a bit blurred, and my focus was filled with an image of my mother smiling. Surveying the scene, the laws of physics were defied.
The slope of the concrete, the angle I had approached, and my momentum surly should have sent me over the edge. It was a miracle I had not gone over the edge. I said a prayer and thanked mom for watching over me. She was always worried about my safety and I know it was her watching over me at that moment. There was no other explanation. I thought about having to blog about this, but as usual, I got caught up with other things that came up, finishing projects that needed taking care of before leaving for vacation, I never got the chance. I never took the time to do it, but now, looking back on it, I don’t know why it took so long to thank my mother for saving me that day.