Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Living in New England: Signs


There are many aspects of life here that are so unique from other parts of the country, and I want to share those things with my family, and perhaps with you- if you have never been here. I do a collection of posts called : "Living in New England" that highlight quintessential New England sights, events, situations, and experiences.
I know of many people who have lived here in New England their entire lives and perhaps don't realize that some of the events and sights that I will describe don't happen elsewhere in the country. Or, maybe you are originally from New England, but have moved away... I hope these posts will bring back some fond memories for you. 
In any event, I wish to share New England with you through the eyes of this Southerner!



We have lived in various cities in the South and the Pacific Northwest and have traveled (via road trips) many times across the country, yet it wasn't until we moved to New England that we have come across the following signs:





What's the most unusual thing about this sign is its age.  In most places this sign would have been replaced decades ago when it first began to rust!  



The following signs are commonly seen in small towns.  I think they are a nice way to remind drivers to slow down and take precaution.  There is also a "deaf person" sign, but I couldn't find one to photograph for this post.  A person applies with their town to get a sign posted on the road close to their house.




A what?!  
A jughandle!  Per Wikipedia a jughandle is a type of ramp or slip road that changes the way traffic turns left at an at-grade intersection.  Got that?! But, once you see one you see why the name is so perfect for the type of turn!   More info here.



Many shops are "seasonal" only open in the late spring or summer when the tourist arrive.  Coming from the land of 24/7/365 this is an unusual sight!







Patriotism is very strong here in New England, as you might expect, and veterans are honored.  Love this!



After growing up in Texas where air conditioning is a given everywhere these signs advertising a.c. always make me smile!





  

Dunkin' Donuts!  
I realize these aren't just in New England anymore, but they are such a staple here I couldn't leave them out.  You can hardly throw a rock here without hitting one!  Think Starbucks, but with donuts!








I remember our first winter here thinking "what's a frost heave?!"  After driving over your first one you immediately get why there are signs posted for them- they can be quite jarring to both you and your car's alignment.  For those of you who have never seen this sign, a frost heave is a large rise, or bump in the pavement that makes driving certain roads a nightmare!  They result from ice forming beneath the surface of soil during freezing conditions.  They appear in the winter then recede in the spring.  More info here.




This sign is at our favorite (and only as they are difficult to come by in New England :) BBQ restaurant Goodie Cole's in Brentwood, New Hampshire.  The owners are from Texas (Dallas) and we are very happy to drive the distance (they are not close to us) to get our BBQ fix on!



To read other "Living in New England" posts visit here!)



106 comments:

  1. I love them !!!! I have never been but I will one day I would like to visit in the fall !!! I've heard there's nothing like a New England fall ! Have a great day

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  2. what a fun post! Love the sign to Dallas..mine says 600 miles! we have nothing but Co Rd 4...or 5 or 12...I was with a person once that said.."man, that Cord family must be really rich"...still cracks me up!

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  3. Thanks for the signs. Truly not seen in the sw. Love the first one and still not sure what it means.

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    1. The "thickly settled" sign means it is a populated area. The funny thing about that particular sign is it is on a country road with houses few and far between :)

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  4. I'm a lifelong New Englander. I've traveled all over, but never really noticed that many of these things are unique to NE. Thanks for sharing a southerner's perspective! Makes me love my home that much more. :)

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    1. and what a wonderful home it is! Lucky you to have grown up here!

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  5. Those "thickly settled" signs brought a smile...happy memories of time spent during the summer on Cape Cod! Fun post.
    Carol H.

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    1. We've only been down to the Cape once - we really need to go back down and explore!

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  6. These are funny, Joan. Are you going to the Barn Dance?

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  7. You must also have a quantity of "Ice on Bridge" signs. Ohio has lots of them, and New Hampshire is even colder in winter.

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  8. Joan,
    Thickly Settled? Does that mean it's a well-populated area? What a crack up. I remember when we were transferred to Texas from California, we laughed at the freeway signs that said "Drive Friendly"
    This post is fun and I really enjoy hearing the standards of other states besides my own.
    Karen

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    1. yes, exactly! And while in Texas be sure to "drive friendly" while dodging the road rage person next to you;)

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  9. So funny! As a lifelong New Englander I had no idea these things were so unique. I have traveled the world, but would never leave New England...:)

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    1. yay! As I said in the opening I was hoping it would do that for some!

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  10. I have never been to NH. I have been to Connecticut when I was a small child and don['t remember it much. Love all these signs. We have a deaf child sign near us. Had never heard of "frost heaves". Stay warm, it is 21 now, woke up at 10 degrees today! UGH!!!! XO, pinky

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    1. We woke up to 3 degrees with a high of 8 today! A low tonight of "0"!! burrrrrrr

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  11. much older sister SusanJanuary 23, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    Positively charming, Joanie!

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    1. they are even more charming in person:) hint.... hint!

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  12. Loved the Moose crossing. My son went to chef school in Vermont. On one of our visits, I read in a local paper that a man went to the Town Meeting to protest the placement of a moose crossing sign on his property. The reason? He didn't want them the wear down his crops when they crossed in that location. Still makes me laugh. That and the phrase, "you can't get there from here."

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  13. Hello!

    I wanted leave my “calling card” the other day, but just did not have time. I ran across your blog searching for paint colors and feel like I’ve found a kindred spirit. I am currently living in San Antonio, but moved here from Bedford, NH in 2007, and share your love for old houses.

    I couldn’t agree with you more about how special New England is. I’ve just subscribed so I haven’t been following you for very long, but I look forward to reminiscing about New Hampshire via your site. And by the way, I absolutely love what you’ve done with your house!

    What prompted me to write is your mention of BBQ. I wanted to pass along our favorites – KC’s Rib Shack in Manchester and Blue Ribbon BBQ in Arlington, MA.
    Nothing like you’d find in Texas, but satisfying, and perhaps closer than Brentwood?

    Looking forward to your next post!

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    1. Thank you Brigid! I will put these names in my car book (I keep restaurants/antique stores/ sights to see) for the next time we are in those areas. So fun you are in San Antonio! We just drove through Bedford today! It's 7 degrees right now at 7pm! We're going to be 0 tonight, but no complaints as it was a stunning day!

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  14. We may not be moving to New Hampshire but it will all be similar to us !
    Snow, woods, if I see a horse in the common I will be delighted and now I know what a Frost Heave is !
    I had seen it before, imagined it might be what it sounds like but also ... the word heave brings unpleasant memories lol.
    We are about 5 weeks away .. sooo excited. Back to the part of the world where we are from but moving to a place in that part of the world where we will be the newbies who know nuthin :)

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    1. So excited for you and your new adventure Candice!

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  15. I have lived in New England my entire life. Yet there was one sign that I have not yet seen. (the jug handle) lol With our changing seasons I believe we have a little bit of Heaven right here on earth. I LOVE it here.
    Fran

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  16. What a great post!! I remember fondly my trips to New England. Do they still serve 'regular coffee?' I ordered one thinking it was just a REGULAR coffee - but NO! It is coffee with cream and sugar! You know, REGULAR, the man said!

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    1. Yes! When we first moved here I ordered ordered my coffee with cream and then one "regular" for Dan - it came with cream and sugar! I've since learned to say "black" instead! Too funny; I had totally forgotten that until you mentioned it.

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  17. Those signs remind me of when our older son first took his drivers test years ago, and you couldn't get any of the sign questions wrong, or you would have to take the test again... There was one picture sign of a boy and girl figure crossing the street with what he thought was a briefcase -- he thought it was a work crossing sign, but really was a school crossing -- as he had heard stories that mom and dad used to go to work together and, I guess, carry our briefcases! Needless to say, he had to take the test over! Think next time he got confused with a blind person crossing the road... he was always thinking more into it than was actually there! Thankfully, third time was the charm! NJ has jug handles too, had never seen them before living there.

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    1. That's a cute story... I am married to an overthinker so I totally get it;)

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  18. It's so funny that you did this post! I was just thinking the other day, "Joan should do a post involving frost heaves!" I had no idea what they were before moving here!

    Also, there is one more "true" BBQ place in NH (that I know of). It's near me in Boscawen, NH! It's called Smoke Shack, and I've found it to be pretty good, but I'll have to try the one you recommended! Here's their link: http://www.ss-bbq.com/

    Best,
    Tim

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    1. Actually... we have eaten there! The first time was good, the second time not so much :(

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    2. Oh no :( Well, I look forward to trying the place you posted about!
      But I just realized (when I came back to find the name of the BBQ place), the picture you posted of "A/C on" in Upstairs Antiques. Is that the same Upstairs Antiques in Concord, MA? If so, I was just there last weekend! :)

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  19. Fun post, Joan! Gotta love Dunkin' Donuts... and a jug handle. :)
    Enjoy the day ~ xo Heidi

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    1. yes, gotta love them... especially on a cold winter day;)

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  20. So fun to see these. My parents are from RI and MA and we lived in MA for 4 years. I remember as a child driving to MA from NY on the turnpike when they had the pilgrim hats/w arrows in them for the exit signs. They're all gone now. My son goes to school in Boston, so happy about that. We'll be moving to New England when we retire - looking forward to it.

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    1. Michelle- I can't imagine what a great experience it must be to college in Boston; I'm jealous;)

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  21. Those are some very interesting signs, funny though. I remember when we first moved to Texas from Florida, and the one sign that caught my eye were the "bridge ices before road". It took me a while to get that one ;)

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  22. I loved this post Joan. It's fun to see the signs unique to this area. In Canada Tim Horton's are the most popular coffee shops across the country. Have you had a Tim's lately?

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  23. Love this post! As a native New Englander it's fun to see this from your eyes, I didn't realize there weren't "deaf child" or "blind person" signs everywhere!

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  24. Love this post Joan! It took us a minute to understand "thickly settled" when we moved to Massachusetts. I also loved how almost everybody posted a sign for selling herbs or antiques along small town roads. I use to love my local "herb lady". Here in California everybody puts signs on their cars, between their businesses and their "in Memoriam" signs for loved ones. I like the New England signs much better!!

    Karen

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  25. Love this post! It showcases all the charms of the wonderful idyllic one of a kind Northeast, love the "moose crossing" sign...you just don't see that everywhere. The older I get the more I am drawn to "the country"...who knows I may be your neighbor one day:)

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    1. Tina, you might not want to mention that to your husband since you just finished building your gorgeous dream house!!:)

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  26. You're back! I'm so glad I checked in today! Your blog is a favorite. We lived in Concord, MA 40 years ago and you and the blog bring back those three wonderful years in New England. sally

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  27. Dunkin' Donuts recently announced plans to open several locations here in California over the next couple of years. This was headline news on the local TV stations. I too loved the unique signs in New England. A few of them were new to me - I've never heard of a "jug handle" before (except on a jug!) nor seen "Thickly Settled." Thanks for taking me back.

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  28. J...I was working on a project near the RISD campus last spring. It was my first time in that neck of the woods. Your "Thickly Settled" picture brings a smile to my face. When I first saw this sign I was so intrigued that I had to pull over immediately and google it! Great post...k

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  29. Joan, I totally enjoyed this post with its jug handles, frost heaves, and thickly settled signs! I have never been to New England. I've only been as far north as upper NY, but I would love to see all these charming signs (and the fall foliage-not the snow!)

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    1. Jane, sounds like you and Leo need to plan a trip!

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  30. Loved the signs but one that I'd never seen before (as a native New Yorker): thickly settled. The jug handle sign's graphic looks familiar but I never knew it had a name :>) Sure do miss midstate New York and New England! In NYS if you want cream in your coffee you order "regular". If you want a plain pizza (crust, sauce, mozzarella) you order a "regular". Love DD - glazed donuts and a hot cup of DD coffee with Half & Half is Heaven 4 me! When I went to college in MA, my all-New England roommates & friends and I had so much fun with each other's pronunciations, accents, and different words for the same things. AnnZ

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    1. I take my coffee the same and love a cuppa DD in the afternoon on occasion! Ann, did you by chance see another "Living in NE" post I did called "They talk funny".... I think you might find it funny;)
      (link is at the bottom of this post btw)

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  31. I just found your blog from urban farmgirl. I live in MA, but went to college in NH and my husband and I take our girls every summer to vacation in North Conway. if it wasn't for this economy, we would move across the state line!

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    1. hi Kerri- Welcome and thank you for letting me know how you found us. Always interesting to hear.

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  32. I am a lifelong New Englander and never thought our signs were out of the ordinary from the rest of the country. Apparently, I am living in a bubble - LOL. We are only a short drive from Goodie Cole's, but we have never eaten there. I will have to give them a try. Thanks for sharing ~ Suzanne.

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    1. Suzanne- if you had been there today we could have had lunch together! Had to go over to your area to Highland Hardwoods for a piece of mahogany for a project!

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  33. Joan, always interesting. Signs I will never see in NC! So glad you returned!
    Ann@Virginiarosa

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  34. What fun. It's always nice to see little bit of the local flavor where our blog pals live. And you are right, I'm sure all the homegrown New Englanders take these things for granted. Thanks for sharing.

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  35. Joan, your posts make me want to visit the north east part of the US! I've sadly never been. You make the area come alive in your posts! Thank you for sharing!!

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    1. Jessica- You'll have to make a trip one day! It would be a special gift for your children to see all the history here!

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  36. Just checked in to see if you're back yet, and you are. Yay! We have some of these signs in our area, but no jug handles. That's a complete new one for me!

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    1. yes, the jug handle ones always make me smile!

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  37. Just wrote a nice long comment and lost it...now I know why I never comment...don't know where it went......
    I have enjoyed finding your blog this last year. As everyone says, love your pictures and the stories that go with them of your beautiful home .
    I followed your advice and ordered the wax sleeves for my hanging kitchen light, not paying too much attention, I put them on and ooo'd and ah'd... till the next day when I noticed wax dripping all over the kitchen table...yup
    light bulb wattage too high....and they were so lovely and perfect!

    I had been checking back periodically to see if you were back and was happy to see you are!!
    I live in Newport Beach CA and enjoyed the signage, as there is nothing like this in fast paced Orange County.
    But the weather.......oh my ....don't know how ya'll do it. We have had 2 weeks of cold weather..down to 34 at night and we have all been complaining ....I know, you're all laughing.
    With the length of this post you can see why I shouldn't be allowed to post.
    Next time will be shorter...promise

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    1. No...please don't make it shorter next time Jody- I loved reading the comment!! Sorry you lost the first one (I know how frustrating that can be.) Blogger is a beast to deal with sometimes.
      And, sorry about the candle sleeves. Do you have your fixture on a dimmer? That also really helps control the heat.
      Well, if you don't like 34 (and yes, I did chuckle reading that;) then I probably shouldn't tell you that it's 5 degrees right now and we'll go to a high of 18 today! Oh, and tonight it will be -8... that's MINUS 8! It's only a short "really" cold snap and we're loving it! :)

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  38. I've seen several similar signs in Maine, but jug handle is all new to me! And the mileage to Dallas is absolutely perfect for you! At first I thought you might have had that made for yourself! So happy you're back!

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    1. I bet you've seen lots of the "moose" signs around your parents place Linsey!

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  39. Great signs! I lived in Maine for YEARS before I understood what a frost heave was. Coming from California, the words "frost" and "heave" were pretty foreign to me.
    xoTrina

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    1. I totally understand as we didn't see them in Texas either;) The winter we arrived (the 2nd snowiest on record;) the signs and HUGE frost heaves were everywhere. When spring arrived we kept saying "Where did they go?!" :) Took us a while to figure them out too!

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  40. Great fun Joan... what a delightful aspect of life.... It seems more personal and friendly... xv

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  41. Wow, some of these are a hoot! It's almost like they're from another country or something. Our nation is really diverse and interesting, isn't it! Thanks so much for sharing these, Joan. This was very interesting.
    Claudia

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  42. ...but where is the sign that says "beautiful farmhouse ahead"?...blessings landy

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  43. I live in MI so we have most of these signs :) but we have deer crossing signs not moose crossing signs!! Also no heave signs.

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    1. I'm surprised you don't have the heave signs with your temps there!

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  44. I love this post! I've lived in New England my whole life and its funny to think that these signs really arent everywhere and they are toally a New England thing. Wicked cool :)

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  45. So glad you are back! This post made me giggle...New England is the land of signs you do not see other places that is for sure!

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  46. Thanks for all the signs in your corner.
    Stay warm.
    pve

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  47. Love these signs. I'd never heard of a "jug handle" before. Ha. And I'm so happy to see you're blogging again, Joan. Welcome back!! :-)

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  48. Texas misses you Joan but, it sure is nice seeing you enjoy the amazing lifestyle up there!

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    1. Ohhh, thank you! That is so sweet. Please have some Mexican food for me;)

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  49. Ok, as a lifelong Californian, I have to ask: what IS a frost heave? We do have "icy" signs on bridges here. Also "slippery when wet" -- seems a little obvious!

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    1. hi Carolyn- right above frost heave photo is commentary with a description plus a wikipedia link if you want to read more about them!

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  50. I am soooo glad you see you are back! I've missed you! And I LOVE this post! Is that the common in Walpole with the "Keep horses off..." sign? If so that is giving me an extra giggle tonight. =)

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  51. I've missed Joan! I really enjoyed reading this post. New Jersey should be re-named the Jughandle State. We've got tons of them. But I've never seen a "Moose Crossing" sign. We have tons of deer though. I got a real kick out of the last sign about the barn dance. That would be great to hang on a wall wouldn't it? Thanks for sharing and so glad to have you back!!
    xoxo,
    Kim

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    1. Thank you Kim! I would be great on a wall- it was just so charming!

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  52. So great to welcome you back!
    For many years I visited the New England flea markets at least twice a year. I grew to love the Village Commons and the aged business districts, still thriving in those days. I found that every good sized town had a Christian Science Reading Room, a Radio Shack and a Dunkin' Donut...Loved those days!

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  53. Thickly Settled, my favorite. That is amazing. Loved this post and the one before it, welcome back! We are from California and the signs in Oregon are different. Our favorite is 'Congested Area'..we never see another car in these areas or someone in need of a hanky!

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  54. Oh my... love your blog. I lived in Derry (and many some years in Laconia and Gilmanton, including a camp at ShellCamp Lake Gilmanton), went to H.S. there and know Brentwood NH well too - many a trip past that way to Hampton Beach! Oh, how I miss Dunkin' Donut (I have landed in GA),miss the foliage (fall my favorite season), miss the history of the area, just miss New England!!! (my mom & her family native new englanders) Dawn

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