Thursday, August 05, 2010

Places to go before I die...

Sounds morbid...huh?  Not really.  I was thinking of the book A Thousand Places To See Before You Die.  I've never read the book, but that's OK.  I already know where I want to go.  I've got only two places on my list.  There's no Paris and no Hawaii.  Here's my list.

The first place I want to visit is The Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, MA.  I have always loved Norman Rockwell's work since I was a child.  My Dad used to ride the train home from work and he would pick up the Saturday Evening Post to read on the train.  I remember picking up the magazine and studying the latest Rockwell painting on the cover.  I was fascinated by the story the painting would tell and all the wonderful detail Rockwell would include.

Years ago the Boy Scouts displayed some of the Rockwell pieces they own at the Museum of Natural Science in Houston.  I saw a small article in the paper and went down one morning.  Much to my surprise, I was the only person there.  It was just the security guard and me for a while and I had all the time in the world to walk around and study the paintings.  I told the guard the story about the Saturday Evening Post and how I had always loved Rockwell.  I was having a little trouble seeing the paintings.  I was too far away to use my reading glasses and too close to see clearly without them.  There was one of those velvet ropes keeping people from getting too close.  The guard saw I was having trouble and let me go under the rope and right up to the paintings!  He said, "I know I probably shouldn't be doing this, but there's no one else so go ahead."  I could have touched them, but of course I knew better.  It was a thrill of a lifetime for me.  I would sure love to see more of his work up close and personal.

I even have the Village of Stockbridge in my home with a tiny Normal Rockwell.  That's him crossing the street with the newspaper under his arm.

I picture myself crossing this street someday.

The second place I want to visit probably isn't on your list.  For the last fifteen years or so I have wanted to visit the Machias Blueberry Festival in Machias, ME.  The festival is held in August each year.  I love blueberries and getting out of hot and humid Texas and visiting cool (hopefully) Maine is very appealing to me.

I discovered the festival by accident.  Around fifteen years ago I was sitting in a movie theater in Houston watching the previews when a promo for the Machias Blueberry Festival popped up on the screen.  It didn't even say where Machias was located, but I knew it couldn't be in Texas because our blueberry season is over in June when it becomes way too hot for blueberries to grow.

The promo intrigued me.  It looked like so much fun, so when I got home I googled Machias Blueberry Festival and learned it was in Maine.  Since the promo never even mentioned the state of Maine I'm assuming it was meant to be distributed there only and was accidentally sent to our theater in Houston.

Every August I look at the website and dream of being there someday.  The town of Machias sounds like a place I'd enjoy visiting.  It's small...only a little over 2,500 people in the 2000 census and surrounded by early American history.

That's my list.  What's on your list?


  1. Betty I also admire Norman Rockwell's art! I have many decorative plates of scenes he painted and I was fortunate to catch an exhibit in Washington DC, when my son was attending college there, of ALL of Rockwell's Saturday Evening Post cover paintings! We spent hours looking at them all. I have yet to visit Stockbridge...but hopefully I'll get there one day.

    I've visited Maine a few times and enjoyed views of it's beautiful shores. I'd love to visit the blueberry ferstival as well..and the lobster fest!

    I have many places I hope to see before I die....more National Parks are on top of my list. I'll be visiting Yosemite soon.

  2. Hmmm, a Blueberry Festival sounds yummy! I have a huge list but will probably not get very far from home - where my heart is!
    Lovely post!

  3. My bucket list started after our boys left the nest. I've been really enjoying the things I've put on hold now that I have the time to do them!

    We have a Miniature Schnauzer too as well a Beagle and small terrier, two cats and two horses.

    Maybe our nest isn't so empty after all!

    Nice blog!

  4. I hope you are able to see those places someday. Norman Rockwell is so nostalgic, I too love seeing the old Saturday Evening Posts. Reminds me of days gone by. I've never been to, or heard of the blueberry festival, but we have some pretty unique festivals in our neck of the woods. Pumpkin, Sauerkraut, apple to name a few. Full fall entertainment.

    BTW.. love that little village!

  5. I'd love to go to the blueberry festival too. And I'd like to see the Golden Gate Bridge, the Acropolis and the Pyramids.

  6. How interesting, Betty! I wish you would want to come to Vancouver. Our blueberries are superb! I would like to visit Rovno, Ukraine. If you read my post today; Aug 6, you'll see why. My Mom's family came from there. I have such a longing to go and explore my roots. Plus I dearly wish to visit Germany and Austria and go back to the Netherlands and Paris once more. Is it too much to ask?

  7. I've always wanted to go to the Shaker settlement in New York, too. And the inside passage through Alaska. And do the Oregon trail in a covered wagon...and, and, and.

    What a thought provoking post!

  8. This was a great post! Thanks for your visit and comments. Hugs, Kerrie

  9. I love Norman Rockwell, too, and would definitely enjoy the trip you describe.

    And I've only been to Maine once, but I was charmed, especially by the small towns. I think you've chosen well.

    I want to go to France sometime, because I was a French major who never was able to go there due to financial issues.


  10. My Machias, Maine, is Door County, Wisconsin. I am always daydreaming about how nice and cool it is there as I swelter in Atlanta.

  11. you better go.....just pack up and do it! life goes by so quick doesnt it?
    I want to go to spain.....really bad. It is a little bit harder to get to.


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