Dateline ReadField, Maine: Your Intrepid Cancer Cure Rider now finds himself in the Northern climes of Eastern Maine. The forests are beautiful, the lake placid and abundant with bass and other fish, and the people friendly….even if Yours Truly does have a hard time understanding them!
You may recall that we spent a little time in Florida with our very close friends Rocky and Karen. Well, I knew they had a place in Maine, but never imagined that I might see them here. Turns out they had decided to come on up, and Rocky brought his trike so we can ride together for the next few days. Along for the ride will also be his good friend Linny, who owns a very successful earthworks company here in Readfield. Linny is to whom I refer above. Good thing Rocky is here to translate for me.
Turns out Rock and Karen are here to sell their home in Maine so they can move full time to sunny Florida. So while helping them with a little final cleaning up I noticed this very lonely fedora on a shelf. It was obvious to me that they had already finished in that area and the hat was left there on purpose. I couldn’t help but inquire as to why. Rocky immediately says “you like it”? Of course I was admiring it, but hesitated to say so. Karen comes in and says “try it on”. And I did and it was a perfect fit.
And now the “Paul Harvey” rest of the story. Decades ago Rocky invited Yours Truly to Maine for their annual 4th of July lobster bake. It took an act of congress (well, actually just the Chief Of Police), but I got the week off. By policy the 4th of July is a mandatory work day for the entire department. Somehow the Chief managed to replace me. Hmmmm, come to think of it, I was replaced awfully easy. Oh well, ancient history.
Anyway, all those years ago I flew to Maine and Rocky picked me up and we went to the lake. There, I met “Ma”, and “Pa”, Rocky’s mother and father. Two wonderful people with whom I immediately fell in love and they adopted me on the spot. We had a fantastic week and to this day they are Ma and Pa (with my best Maine twang) to Leanne and I.
So I try on the Fedora. It’s a perfect fit and Karen and Rocky go crazy. Huh? So Your Intrepid Cancer Cure Rider finally boldly asks what the deal is. My friends, this hat was Pa’s fishing hat. He’s gone Home now. Rocky and Karen have insisted that they give me the hat, and I’m proud and honored to become its’ caretaker. Ma came by yesterday…she’s in her late 80’s….and when I walked in wearing it we all had a wonderful, if poignant moment.
And so Yours Truly enjoys yet more wonderful time with friends and family. However, I’ve been on the road just over two months, and (for those wondering) I’m at 9,886 miles. I wish I could say I’m on the homeward stretch. But alas, America’s Perimeter Tour – “To The Ends Of America To End Cancer” took on a life of its own long ago. Yours Truly is just a small player in an extremely large picture. I confess to being a little road weary and homesick, but will, God willing,