Saturday, May 1, 2010
What does it mean exactly to be a Sandwich Girl? Rather than go down the political activist role with the oil spill, I decided to stay with my excerpts and nature writing. My thesis in grad school was a memoir entitled, Ballad of a Sandwich Girl, which is on the back burner. It is my goal to publish two historical novels: Etched in Granite, which is to be first (soon) and Embracing Joanna, the story of my 8th great grandmother's transatlantic journey from Sandy New Bedforshire, England to Salem Massachusetts, and my nature journal, The Summer at Duncan Lake, based on my outdoor adventures last summer as I lived on the pristine shores of Duncan Lake in the wild.
I will share extracts from my memoir, which not only offers positive and meaningful experiences, it maintains inner calm for me during the upheaval with the oil spill on the Gulf, for which I will volunteer in the bird and animal sealife rescue, should the oil spill land on the shores near where I am presently.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A SANDWICH GIRL?
Growing up in Sandwich, New Hampshire is a claim to fame in these parts. The well-groomed historic farms seem to stand still in time. Tucked away in the mountains and bordering Squam Lake, made famous by the movie “On Golden Pond”, it is much like a Rockwell painting.
There’s a sort of notion that if you grew up in Sandwich, that you were an artist, logger, farmer or tree hugger, each respecting the others. Many of the residents of Sandwich pride themselves on living a natural, organic lifestyle, which lends itself to being a true Yankee.
The middle daughter of five, I played in the woods, climbed trees, learned how to whittle, and tended to the campfire at the Coolidge farm at the annual school picnic. I rode my bike everywhere, keeping up with the boys, and I even broke both of my arms. I won countless rhubarb eating contests by quickly eating three stalks without wincing or gagging.
The church bell in the middle of town kept time for us – when to go home, when to meet at the playground and when we were late and had to face the wrath of my mother. We hung out at Glen Smith’s General Store eating fireballs and squirrel nut zippers while we planned our next adventure, riding our bikes with a playing card clipped on the spokes with a wooden clothespin.