Back to the USA

We returned to the Pumpkin Patch RV Campground on Thursday, September 20 and settled back into a nice quiet spot.  On Friday we went to Hannaford’s Supermarket and bought all the groceries we would need for several days.  Since we were hungry for Mexican food we located some corn tortillas and fixed homemade enchiladas,  Heavenly!  Then did a weeks laundry nearby.  It is the time of the year for cooling down in Maine and occasional showers so we can not plan much outside without a rainjacket! On Sunday we went to Friends Mike & Cheryl for dinner then retrieved all our “goodies” which were left behind before traveling to Canada.  While out on Friday we received a call from another client so our plans have made a minor change.  We checked out of Pumpkin Patch on Monday heading to Portland and Saco/Old Orchard Beach KOA Campground.  While there we celebrated my birthday wih brunch at Bintliff’s American Cafeand then dinner at David’s on Monument Square downtown. Yea, no cooking today!  Portland has been a busy port since the 1650s. In 1820, Maine became a state with Portland as its capital. In 1832, the capital was moved to Augusta. In 1851, Maine led the nation by passing the first state law prohibiting the sale of alcohol except for “medicinal, mechanical or manufacturing purposes.” The law subsequently became known as the Maine law, as 18 states quickly followed. On June 2, 1855, the Portland Rum Riot occurred.  On June 26, 1863, a Confederate raiding party led by Captain Charles Read, entered the harbor at Portland and the Battle of Portland Harbor ensued, one of the northernmost battles of the Civil War. The 1866 Great Fire of Portland, Maine of July 4, 1866, ignited during the Independence Day celebration, destroyed most of the commercial buildings in the city, half the churches and hundreds of homes.  More than 10,000 people were left homeless.  In 1853, upon completion of the Grand Trunk Railway to Montreal, Portland became the primary ice-free winter seaport for Canadian exports.  The Portland Company manufactured more than 600 19th-century steam locomotives.  Portland became a 20th-century rail hub as five additional rail lines merged into Portland Terminal Company in 1911.  Following nationalization of the Grand Trunk system in 1923, Canadian export traffic was diverted from Portland to Halifax, Nova Scotia, causing marked local economic decline.  Since then tourism has added a big boost to the local economy.  Portland’s downtown area is a typical harbor town with lots of activity and restaurants on the waterfront and all the rest of the town uphill.  Many one way streets and angled intersections with narrow streets and parked cars on one side make it not an easy drive.  Most frustrating thing we find is the lack of sign toppers on corners indicating street names, so it really is guess and by golly where you are going.  Okay if you lived here all your life, but??!  It is a nice town to visit and we always enjoy the Casco Harbor ferry ride. 

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