A couple years ago I read a book called “Sailing away from winter” by Silver Donald Cameron.   This is essentially what we are doing.   I do remember as he went through Maine he remarked about several different kinds of people he came accross.  The one that caught my attention was “the Maine Automatic talker”.  While I have not met one of these yet, we did meet some interesting people today as we traveled via two busses from Northeast Harbor to Bar Harbor and then to Ellsworth and back.  All of this to get a SIM card so I could write this blog post.

Here are 6 amazing people that helped us today.  We applaud their hospitality and dedication to service.

Bar Tender at the Cherry Stone

Several years ago while camping at Hadley point in Bar Harbor we came into town and went to this place for lunch.   We had fun shopping and seeing the sights in BH.   As we got off the bus today I gravitated to this place and spied the bar tender getting the area ready for opening.   I asked him about electronics stores…nope.   Cell phone stores…nope   Hardware stores.. ah yes there was one of those.   He also gave the information about the possibility of a bus to Ellsworth but was unsure if one actually existed.   It seemed to be in the realm of a fantasy ferry tale but did direct us to the green bus building that held all the knowledge about local transportation.

the Gal at the True Value

We did a bit of a walk about and finally stumbled on the True Value store and found a clerk that lead us to the bundle buggie section of the store.   We were blessed by her offer to assemble the beast so we could wheel it out of the store.   Val commented that she was stunningly beautiful as well.

The bus office gal

Still unsure about how we would actually get to Ellsworth to get the magic “SIM” card we went to the green building on the village green in BAAAAA HAAAABAAAA   We met a woman who amazed us with her helpfulness and hospitality.    She dug out a schedule and then said that we should go for a walk because there were no actual signs but if she showed us where to stand (in the shade) the buss would stop and take us to Ellsworth.   She walked us accross the “green” and showed us the spot of dirt to stand on.    We were early so went on a bit of a walk about and then returned.

Bus driver 1 Norma

Norma showed up at exactly 1:04 and welcomed us aboard her bus to Ellsworth.  We stuffed 12 dollars into the receptical but were offered no reciept or proof of purchase.  When we inquired about the return fair she said that we just needed to tell Jeanne that we already paid Norma and that it was OK!    She dropped us off on the highway at “not a stop” between Remys and LLBean.    Val went to LLBean and I proceeded to our main reason to be in Ellsworth, to purchase a SIM card that might actually have coverage.

The Verizon guy Ivan

So I met Ivan.  He is from Peru and also a church planter… who is working at Verizon until the church is properly planted in Belfast.   I had to walk across the street to the Bangor Saving Bank to extract some actual cash because when you buy one of these pre paid SIMs you have to pay in Cash for some reason!!!!!   The good news is that for $75 a month you have unlimited data!!!!!!!

Bus driver 2 Jeanne

After we shopped at Shaws for a while and filled our bundle buggy Jeanee showed up right on time to pick us up.   She asked.. “did you pay?”  We replayed that we were told by Norma to tell her that we did.   We roared off to TJ Maxes were she was expecting to pick up two young boys… they were not there and after Jeannne had counted down the seconds according to her cell phone she tore out of the parking lot toward the Walmart.    Only moments later she got a call from the dispatcher saying that he had just got a call form someone who said they were waiting at Shaws and that she went right on by.    We had been at shaws so she wheeled around and asked us if indeed she stopped at Shaw’s and picked us up!!! We agreed that she did stop at Shaw’s and she thanked us.    By this time we were passing a pizza joint and after she paused for oncomming traffic she said something like “hang on I’m going for it” and spun the bus around in a 180 and proceeded to return to the Shaws…… where ther was no one waiting!     After calling dispatch again and talking back and forth about the possibility of some people that may or may not be waiting for a bus, we heard someone else break in on the radio (Norma) asking if they had picked up a man with a white beard and a woman with purple hair or not.     It took a moment for us to realize that she was talking about us!   Suddenly ther were two young men running toward us from the TJ Max.   At last the missing riders!   Off we went direct to the Walmart and then to BAAAA Haaaa BAAAA!

All in all it was a great day.

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