Monday, May 12, 2008

One Blog Visitor's Feelings About Of My Internet Published Works

Juliana L’Heureux is a native of Dundalk, Maryland who has lived in Maine for many years. She is a well known, long time professional writer up in Maine. Her latest professional accomplishment was to be appointed as the new executive director of the Maine Association of Mental Health Services (MAMHS), in Augusta. The press release for that substantial milestone in her life is on this blog and right below this blog post. She has kindly, and graciously, written the following on my behalf:

Flashback: From a Dundalk Annex

From Dundalk to Maine and Back Again

By Juliana L’Heureux

One Turkey Run
Topsham, Maine 04086
207-721-9629 (Home)
207-751-8117 (cell)

Being among the streetcar commuter students who attended junior high school at the Dundalk Annex, in Sparrow’s Point, probably prepared me for the deja-vu feeling I experienced while like living and writing in Maine.

Obviously, no one drives north to Maine on a streetcar. Although Kennebunkport is known for its streetcar museum (and the summer home of President George W. Bush), these cabled antiques are relics of the last century.

Nevertheless, the sense of living in a scenic annex was recently made evident by David Crews, a Dundalk native, who happens to write about the beauty of Maine, by posting stories on his various blogs and Internet projects. Although Crews once lived in Maine, his travel, these days is done in cyberspace, on the Internet. “When I lived in Maine, we drove all over the place having fun on Saturday nights,” he says.

Nowadays, Crews describes Maine like a well informed Internet travel writer.

So, what’s so special about this? Well, because my Internet domain name is I’m a Dundalkian (a word I recently learned) who does the same thing, except, I’ve actually lived in Maine for the past 25 years.

Moreover, for the past 20 years, I’ve written a weekly column about the state’s 400 years of French heritage, culture and language inherited from Quebec and the Canadian Maritimes. It’s called Les Franco-Americains, but over the years the scope
broadened to include coverage of almost anything related to French culture. Indeed, I’ve covered the important French influence in winning the American Revolutionary War.

Another related story is Baltimore’s lovely Cathedral-Basilica and National Shrine of the Assumption, with its French artistic and historic connections.

Crews, in his writing and photography, completes the Dundalk to Maine annex connection for me. Frankly, I’m impressed by the quantity, and the quality of articles, and stories posted by Crews on his websites and Maine blogs. Maine’s Vacationland tourist slogan is supported by colorful outdoors photographs. He spotlights the rugged individualism of the people living in Maine towns like Patten, and tiny places like Sherman and Island Falls.

These small Northeast Maine communities are so tiny, even people living in nearby towns hardly know they exist. Locals boast “wicked” Downeast accents. They might say, “Eyhaaa, so’s a t’urist act’ally b’lieves, ya’ can’t get theeaaaa from heeaaaa”, made comically classic in “Burt and I” dialogues with the late Marshall Dodge. They’re the quaint places Crews knew when he worked at his uncle’s hunting lodge in Patten, after graduating in 1968, from Dundalk High School.

Crews writes about experiences enjoyed during his youthful Maine days, reminiscent of the scenic innocence Steven King describes in his excellent short story, “The Body”, later made into the “Stand by Me” movie.

My deja-vu feeling of being transposed to an annex returns when I read about Maine on one of Crews’ websites. Without leaving Dundalk, he even captures the heart of another state slogan, “The Way Life Should Be”.

© Juliana L’Heureux
May, 2008

No comments: