Merry Christmas, from Maine!

DSC01871I’m Lea Wait, and my latest mystery, SHADOWS ON A MAINE CHRISTMAS, was honored about a month ago by being on the Library Journal’s “best Christmas Books of 2014” list.!cid_487CF410-53E3-4F9A-B4E9-3E3180900689
Of course, I was thrilled. But I also suspected that the words “Maine Christmas” didn’t hurt in the selection process.
All those romantic winter wonderland Christmas cards with scenes of snow-covered roads and pine trees and white colonial homes with wreathed doors, horses and sleighs, snowmen, heavily laden Christmas trees, towns with candles in every window, town carolers …all those pictures that come to our collective American minds …. tend to be reminiscent of Currier & Ives scenes from the mid-1800s — and winter in New England. Perhaps especially in Vermont and Maine.
This year I’ll be spending my 15th Christmas in Maine. Although I live in a home (yes, a white colonial with green shutters, built in 1774,)most of my family Christmases have been spent further south — in New York, or New Jersey, or even further away from Maine. States closer to where the rest of my  family lives, works, and goes to school.
My first Maine Christmas is very clear in my memory.  It was 1975. My mother had retired north, and that year somehow the whole family managed to gather in Maine to celebrate together.
I was living in Greenwich Village then, working full-time in lower Manhattan during the day, and attending New York University full-time at night to earn graduate degrees. I was  in my late twenties; I’d been married and divorced, and had decided I wanted to adopt one or more children. Friday nights I volunteered to work with children aged 6-12 at the New York Foundling Hospital, and my application at a New York City adoption agency was complete. My boyfriend at the time (the guy who only 28 years later became my husband) had taken the pictures for my homestudy.
His family was in Caracas, Venezuela that year, so I suggested he spend the holidays with my family. He couldn’t resist the idea of a Maine Christmas, so we agreed to rent a car and head north.
He  picked me up at my Christopher Street apartment a little after noon Christmas Eve, since I had to work that morning, and   we headed north. Three blocks into our trip he turned to me and asked, “Do you think I should take gloves with me?” I assured him he should. We double-parked while he ran in to a drugstore and bought a pair.
By the time we reached Connecticut it had started to snow.  By Massachusetts, the snow was several inches deep.  By Maine, it was a classic winter wonderland.
It was a special Christmas for both of us. But, then, Maine Christmases are always special.
Happy Holidays!

2 Responses

  1. Those are, indeed, Christmas card worthy photos. Thank you for sharing them. From sunny, green California I’m sending you best wishes for a lovely, white Maine Christmas.

  2. And happy holidays to you, Wendy!

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