This past Christmas, in lieu of gifts, Andrew and I booked a cabin and headed up to one of our favorite places: Maine. We love the quiet, the beauty, and the nice, welcoming, hardworking people. It’s great.
We planned an overnight stop in Freeport before heading to our main Maine destination further up the coast. While Freeport has become a little too congested and focused on outlet shopping for us to consider it our final respite destination, we are big fans of L.L. Bean and this town happens to be the home of L.L. Bean’s headquarters, including their flagship store which is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Not that we’re typically jonesing for outdoor gear at 2:00 AM, but this is A) an interesting quirk for a tiny town of just 7,879 people (according to the 2010 census), and B) sometimes it’s nice to shop once the worshipers of the all mighty nickel have returned home from their outlet shopping pilgrimage.
While we were leisurely strolling through the different departments around 10:00 PM, I came across this book in the hiking section:
Andrew and I have a soft spot in our hearts for waterfalls. We had an amazing experience in 2009 while visiting Dominica (not to be confused with the Dominican Republic) where we swam at the base of a waterfall in the middle of the rainforest.
This memory is so vivid I swear I can still feel the rush of cool water over my skin, feel the mist spritzing in my eyes from the surface of the pool, feel the pressure on my chest from the cascading water hitting the basin after a 200 ft drop, and feel the adrenalin pumping through my body while trying not to think about how deep the pool might be or what creatures might call this basin home. Sometimes when I’m in the shower, I’ll turn the temperature down really low, plunge my whole head under the running water, close my eyes, and ruminate in that memory for a quick moment. But not for too long because that water was damn cold despite being in a hot and humid Caribbean rainforest!
So when I came across this book in L.L. Bean, we both offered an enthusiastic and in tandem, “Oooooooooooo!” That was enough discussion to know the book was leaving the store with us. We bought the book and soon after started making plans. The book contains 101 waterfalls throughout New England and we plan to visit all of them in 2019. Some of them are on the easier side and some of them will take a little more planning and effort to reach, but who doesn’t like a good challenge?
We’d be honored to have you follow our challenge and we hope we won’t disappoint. We’ve started already and have some good stories to share soon. So come back to read about our ups and downs (literal and figurative), see pictures of some beautiful places throughout New England, and maybe get inspired to do your own challenge in your own way. Maybe you want to read every novel written by Agatha Christie. Maybe you’re interested in visiting every battleground in your state. Maybe you want to try the delectable offerings of every food truck in your city. (Okay, totally do that one, just please invite me along for the ride!) Figure out what YOUR kind of adventure is and go for it—what do you have to lose? With the right planning and motivation, (almost) anything is possible.
One last tidbit. Andrew and I exchanged gifts the night before we were married. This is what I gave him:
Our relationship started with an epic adventure to Europe and we knew we’d have many more in many different forms. It’s who we are; it’s what we’re passionate about. And while this compass offers clarity and direction for our adventures, I’d argue these adventures offer clarity and direction for our lives.