Statewide– Ralph Ouellette left early this morning to cross the state, and after 45 minutes, found each town more unfamiliar than the last.
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Ouellette, who planned the trip on MapQuest, his Garmin, and the Gazetteer just to be on the safe side, repeatedly voiced his astonishment as he drove through town after town.
“How in the hell do you say that one?” he asked his family, pointing at the sign welcoming them to Embden.
“Ebben? Ebmen? Never heard of that one in my friggin life.”
His astonishment was repeated just moments later as the family 2010 Chevy Tahoe entered New Portland.
“Jesus Christ, there’s a New Portland? You got to be kidding me.”
Ouellette prefers to remain close to his home in Island Falls, where he rarely travels beyond Passadumkeag, Howland, or Enfield.
He used to travel to Bangor for Christmas shopping, but seldom makes the trip anymore. This latest road trip has introduced him to a whole new world of towns, the names of which he would have thought someone made up the name of if he hadn’t seen the signs with his own eyes.
“Friggin GPS can’t even pronounce half these weird towns.”
Ouellette’s meandering path across Maine was intended to avoid having to take the main roads “where the crazies are,” but the 47 year old is so overwhelmed by towns he’s never heard before, it may not have been a good tradeoff.
“There’s a Livermore and a Livermore Falls? Je-sus.”