There has lately been a demand for pictures of us that are professional, high-rez, and current, so yesterday, we met man-about-Waterville and professional photographer Patrick Groleau on Main Street at 9 o’clock in the morning, and spent the next two-and-a-half hours walking around the city, with occasional stops by brick walls, old Studebakers-turned-beer-cellars, weed-choked hitching posts, the obligatory park-cannon, and the Two Cent (or Two Penny) Bridge. At one point, Patrick was taken with the notion that we should have a picture on the tracks, which would have been OK, except that we had to mention to him that. . .there was a train coming.
Which! Was an opportunity to scramble up a bank, and pose by a half-eroded retaining wall so that a picture could be taken with the engine over our shoulders.
We then walked some more, stepping lightly past the camps of the brotherhood of people with no fixed address; were educated on the “safe” and “unsafe” sides of the river, and entertained with tales of hobo camps of days gone by, and the fine art of freight car hopping.
Our last stop was Children’s Book Cellar, for an Authors in Bookstore shot, after which we stopped by Framemakers to drop off the cover art for The Gathering Edge to be framed, thence to Gifford’s for well-earned milkshakes (which Gifford’s has now decided are “frappes” — and we were corrected by the counterperson when we asked for “milkshakes”) and out to Heartland Estates to view an open house at the “stand alone condominium” community. It was a nice house, I guess; ‘way too small for life as we live it (though it had radiant floors, which I confess to coveting), and ‘way too rich for the blood of freelance writers. We tried not to create too much consternation, but I’m not sure we succeeded.
Back into town we went, for to pick up groceries, and take-out, because it had suddenly become quite late. Then, a nap, and when we woke, there were photographs in Steve’s inbox, several of which we deployed to those awaiting them.
The photos are interesting — for instance, they reveal that Steve lives in his face much more than I do — and make Waterville look every inch an Urban Center.
We also learned, in the course of our walk about town that Toast Express, which had been a welcome addition to our breakfast choices, has closed. We were last in a couple weeks ago, to find that the menu board had been removed (Oh, said the woman behind the counter, it’s just being updated), and that the regulars were being pulled aside for whispered conversations, while the counter-boss assured another person — Oh, no, I’m not leaving; I’m just going down to Kentucky for a couple weeks to watch my grandson…
We had hoped that the signs were not what we thought they were. Silly us.
The theory I’ve heard is that things like Toast are too expensive for the area, which may well be true. Prices of things, and food have gone up, but Waterville in specific, and Maine in general harbors an aging population of former blue collar workers, who have now slipped over the line from middle class to poor.
This weekend is a working weekend, with a small celebratory break on the morrow. We had thought that we might go to Toast Express for breakfast, but — guess not.
Everybody have a great weekend!
Today’s blog title is brought to you by Ringo Starr, “Photograph.” Here’s your link.