Silence Is Golden

February 19, 2010

I just spent 2 days in Kennebunkport, Maine and had such a great time.  At this stage in my life, my idea of a perfect vacation involves a cozy room, a fireplace, a good book and silence.  This was my sixth visit to The Captain Lord Mansion  and it is one of my favorite places in the world.  I discovered this B&B about 15 years ago when I was looking for somewhere for my family to spend Christmas, since my parents’ house was under construction and my sister Robyn and I both lived in small apartments.  Robyn was in law school in Portland, Maine, so I found a couple of places in Maine, sent my sister to check them out and The Captain Lord Mansion was at the top of my list. She (and my dad, if I remember right) visited it first and as soon as they walked in the door they were won over and made our reservation.

I can’t afford to buy milk right now, much less take a vacation, so this trip was my Christmas gift from my parents.  And boy, did I need it.  Since adopting Rahul almost 2 years ago, while I’ve had the occasional break, I hadn’t taken a vacation.  And I have to say, the thing I appreciated the most about the trip, was the SILENCE.  Its amazing how soothing the sound of silence is.  I literally parked myself in front of the fireplace in my room and read the whole time.  The breakfast cook told me about a man named Wilbur who visits there every Fall for 18 days.  He loves reading so much that he ships a big box of books to the CLM before he flies in.  She said he becomes a fixture in the wing backed chair in front of the fireplace in the mansion’s common room and just quietly reads from morning to night.  Sounds like bliss to me.

One of the books I took with me to read was Persuasion by Jane Austen.  I read it years ago, but recently saw a great exhibit of Jane Austen’s letters at the Morgan Library and it inspired me to re-read some of my favorites.  The first time I read it I was traveling on a Greyhound bus and the sun went down just as I got to the best part (the last two chapters are gripping and amazing!) and the light above my head went out.  Panicking, I looked around the bus for another seat and realized that they were all filled!  So I held the book up the window and every time we passed a street light I would read a few words.  I just couldn’t bear to wait until I got home to see how it ended!  So as I re-read Persuasion yesterday and was getting to the end, I realized it was time to check out of my room.  I really didn’t want to get into the car without having finished it.  So after I checked out and packed my car, I sat in the wing backed chair by the fireplace in the common room and dug in.  And just as I was nearing the end I heard the mansion staff whispering about me. Apparently I had earned a new nickname–Wilbur.

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