A few of my friends and I started the Columbus Day weekend early and headed North to Bar Harbor, Maine, where one of our friends is from. It wasn’t until midnight that we arrived. We wanted to get a jump start so we drove straight for Cadillac Mountain before calling it a night. When we reached the summit, we were greeted by a galaxy of some of the brightest stars I’ve ever seen, surrounded by complete darkness. No light disturbances. Unreal. We bundled up like burritos, laid on the rocks, and looked up at the universe, trying our best not to scream in shock at every shooting star we saw.
Our amazement at the foliage (I had never seen this shade of pink in the wild before), the vastness of the mountain ranges, and ocean below them brought us to shrieks. No words could fully express how giddy this magical place made us. I really liked the vibe of the friendliness and simplicity of the people.
The weekend was spent exploring the unbelievable scenery of Bar Harbor from a local’s point of view. We tried as best we could to skip the tourist spots.
On the second day there, I was so happy to have a long run scheduled. My friend Cole and I took off through the mountains and were swept away in a paradise of running trails. Truly a runner’s dream! I decided that this place was the perfect place for running. Rolling hills, picturesque scenery, the purest air.
Arguably one of our favorite activities that the weekend was tasting every single balsamic vinegar in the Fiore Artisan Olive Oils & Vinegar store. We were truly drunk off of balsamic. They had espresso! And coconut! And summer peach! Not to mention the other fun & flirty flavors of fig, cinnamon pear, and dark chocolate. The world of balsamics is a fabulous world. We put some on popcorn. And you can put it on ice cream, like whaaat?
Before we headed out on Monday morning, we just had to stop in at Thrive Juice Bar - such a cute lil joint! We also all noticed how happy the people who worked there were. That’s always refreshing. Some of our favorites on the menu:
Morning Mocha // banana, organic cold-pressed coffee, gluten-free oats, ground flax, cocoa nibs, vegan chocolate protein powder, dates, & almond milk
Green Lizard smoothie // pineapple, mango, banana, spinach, dates, coconut milk, avocado, topped with gluten-free granola, fresh banana, fresh pineapple, & shredded coconut
Superfood Berries Quinoa Breakfast Bowl // warm almond milk and quinoa topped with wild Maine organic blueberries, dried goji berries, cranberries, slivered almonds, cinnamon, & brown sugar
To be honest, I had a hard time shifting back to reality and my everyday life as we concluded our long-weekend adventure. But at the same, why really is “everyday life”? Who is to say what it should be? I can channel the tranquility and simplicity from the weekend in Acadia National Park and hold it as close to me as I choose and carry it with me wherever I’d like. Heck, I could move there!
At this time in my life, I have such an itch to see the world. But I’m realizing how much exploring I have left to do even in New England. I reached a newfound appreciation for where I’ve grown up, especially as I consider moving further west once I graduate. It can be easy to take advantage of something so familiar. But after this weekend, I’m revitalized by the serene transition into autumn. Something I hope I never take lose appreciation of. When I spent time in California this summer, I learned a lot about what I want, but I also learned about what I don’t want. Traveling does that. You can’t go wrong, really.
As I arrived back in Western Mass, I realized that I’ve been pretty on edge lately. I haven’t been too truthful about my emotions and don’t feel quite like myself. I have found myself doing things that go against what I know is best for me. And that disconnect is one of the hardest things for me to work through. I’m working on diving into my emotions and am trying to discover why they’re lingering. There’s always a reason when emotions don’t seem to leave. I think I have a hard time accepting life’s fluidity. I’m very structured and when I’m not completely disciplined, it’s easy for me to completely fall off the wagon. This is also natural. Like the seasons themselves.