“Down River” – as in, “We are going to head Down River today”, or, “Let’s watch the news to see what the weather is Down River”, or, “I saw three moose on the road when I went Down River yesterday”…..you get the idea? We aren’t talking canoe ride here. Down River was where we were headed whenever we got in the car………growing up in Greenville, Maine we were up river from all the places roads took us. Well…….there were the dirt roads and logging roads that went the other way – but that is a topic for another day….. (Wan smile).
Down River took us to the great city of Bangor, where there were stores that had just about everything a person could want. Even had an escalator store in the old days – now that was a pretty fine day riding the magic stairs, if I do say so myself.
Down River also took us to the ocean………the crashing waves on the rocks, lobster boats in the harbor and of course to a drive up Cadillac Mountain. Down River, I learned, wasn’t actually a town, but rather a direction to head. It even could lead you to the huge city of Portland way down in the southern part of Maine if you weren’t careful to stay on Route 15 in Guilford.
Does this sound like a simpler life, a simpler time and still an adventure? Welcome to my childhood. It really was spectacular to grow up in Maine. Especially in the fall, when the bugs were gone, the woods were oh so clear – and it was the right side of winter, which is to say it wasn’t mud season.
My Mum would have loved to see this beautiful video I figured out how to make and post on youtube.
Here is a song my son wrote that says it all about what was both up river, and down river. In this song he talks about tourists and visitors who missed the best part by heading home a bit too early…..I have always agreed with him on that.