Friday Randomness About New England


Well Ang’s Chik Fil A blog made me homesick for the South, and I started thinking about all the things that gave me culture whiplash when I moved to New England. One of those things (as I noted at Ang’s) was the different way that alcohol was treated (and taxed and taxed and taxed some more up here). Now, where I was from in the Florida panhandle, you could buy beer and wine almost anywhere: at the 7-11, at the gas station, and at grocery stores. Heck, back in the ’80’s they had these things called “cruise throughs” or “brew thrus” that you could actually drive up and get some beer without leaving your car, including (I’m not kidding) beer in a “go cup.” Now, I certainly don’t advocate that or think it’s good or safe, but I’m just showing the vast and huge difference in attitudes between this part of New England and that part of the South. Up here, however, you can get beer and wine only at liquor stores.

Another thing that surprised me in comparing just south of the Bible belt to the puritanical New Englanders was the proliference of statues of the Virgin Mary:

These are all over the place up here; whereas, you’re far more likely to see a pink flamingo lawn ornament in Florida. This may be due to the high concentration of Catholics up here, but still, it was different to me.

Another thing I’d never heard of were things called “three families” (or four or five families); these, it turns out, are buildings that may or may not at one time have been single families (just like it sounds), but have been turned into multiple apartments. Here’s a three family:

These may or may not be owner occupied. Um, that’s all I really know about them, but isn’t it interesting? (okay, Wendy’s probably busting a gut about now because she’s from here and this is all normal to her! Teehee)

Another thing I noticed is that they are either big into conservation or lazy as all get out here because instead of cutting branches off to avoid power lines, they sort of carve out a power line niche:

Sorry that pic’s at an angle, it’s the best one I got of the power line + creative tree cutting and it was all off kilter (imagine what the others looked like if this was the best one!).

And then of course there is just the beautiful architecture up here. I love this princess turret house:

And this little wall thing (sorry about the window glare):

And I love the pretty pretty yards:

And I even found some azaleas yesterday (these remind me of the South because they are everywhere down there, yay!):

And of course some things are just the same wherever you go:

Or is it just my imagination that everywhere in America, drugstores all look exactly the same? I mean it might be a Walgreens or an Eckerds, but it’s the same old store, right?


The first pic is of the lavender house that I first blogged in the winter and promised Rainy that I’d redo in spring. Unfortunately, apart from the lovely lavenderness of their house, they didn’t do anything else . . . no pretty flowers. Sigh. While I’m on the subject of Rainy, if you get a chance, you might want to see her Sights and Sounds blog post. It’s truly unique and a real experience of her park area; I just loved it.


31 thoughts on “Friday Randomness About New England

  1. Those are some lovely pictures, I love the house with the turret…dammit, I want one!
    I can’t really comment cause I’ve only actually been in 1 State…no wait, we drove through Indiana that one time, and am I right in saying Chicago is in…Illinois?
    My geography is sucky šŸ˜›
    But I truly love some of the architecture, they’re so different to English houses, I find them lovely.

    I’m still recovering from SPN…

  2. Back in the UK we don’t have the drive throughs, (whether they provide a case of beer or a “to go” mug!!), but then there’s a pub within staggering distance of virtually everyone’s house!

  3. we have a bit of the same architecture and whatnot around here that you have up there, but usually only in older neighborhoods. i love it, too.

    we have beer drive-thrus, too, but i’ve never heard of a to-go mug for beer. could that just be a florida thing, since so many people go there for spring break? i’ve never been further south than tennessee, and that was such a brief visit that i have no idea what it was like.

  4. Very nice pictures, I love to drive around and look at different houses,whether it’s in my own neighborhood or when I am visiting other areas. And around Christmas I love to drive around and look at all the houses with pretty lights or in the spring to see all the lovely gardens. I love Victorian style houses, when they are maintained of course!
    That purple house is cute, I love the house with the Turetts!

    Everything around here seems to have a drive through, banks, drug stores, restaurants (now they even come to your car to drop food off at TGI Fridays and places like that, they have specially assigned parking spots for it!) No drive through Liquor stores though, not yet anyways….lol

  5. I understand the culture shock having moved the opposite direction as you from MA to SC. I hope you’ll grow to love it up there.

    Oh. Don’t forget to paaak your caaaa in Haaavaaad yaaad….


  6. WOW!! This is fantastic!!
    Not only a photo of the lavendar house….but lots and lots of houses!!
    This is wonderful Fuzzy. Thank you for the nice compliment about my blog.
    Seems like I am not the only one Day Tripping with a camera.**Grinns**

    Thank you so much for sharing.

  7. Yay, thanks, Tally! And Oooh, you could take pics of the houses near where you live to show me (um, us, all of us); I do love seeing other parts of the world! And what do people put in their yards (um, gardens?) where you are? Gnomes? Birdbaths? whatever all else? So curious about this stuff (guess that’s why I imagine others might want to see the stuff around here). Oh! And tell me about SPN, sorry I had to go, but I’ll be back tomorrow for mondo SPNage. Huggs to you

    Hehe, Dudge, staggering distance, that’s good. šŸ˜€

    What are the newer neighborhoods like where you are, Kerry? Just curious because you said the older ones are like these, so . . . ? I mean I know I could just get on a plane and come and see for myself. lmao

    Ooooh, Maggie, I’m the same with driving around and looking at the Christmas lights, such fun and so beautiful. Then again, I love love love anything Christmas-y so no surprise there, I guess. šŸ˜€ And I know what you mean about the drive thru thing and the no quite drive thrus at Fridays and the like; we have that here, too. This is kind of cool, hearing about everyone’s areas and such. šŸ˜€

    Oh, Chickadee, I DO love it up here; especially the seasons and all the wardrobe choices that go along with it, but also so so many things. It’s just different. Thanks so much for stopping by; come back any time you like! šŸ˜€

    Aw, thanks, Rainy, you are too kind; I do love to do one of these now and again, but I’m glad that I have yours to visit all the time! šŸ˜€ Huggs to you.

  8. Oh Fuzzy,
    This is so cool, getting a glimpse of your neck o’ the woods in springtime!! The princess turret house is beyond cool!! Have a great weekend…… @@ hugs, G. xo

  9. I love the pictures!!! Ohhh, growing up I remember a “drive through liquor store in Chattanooga. You didn’t “buy by the cup”…but you’d go through and they’d load up your order…hahaha. (My parents don’t drink AT ALL…but, I remember being with my friend…and her dad went through!). I loved the architecture on that turret house…I want a coooool house!

    Lol @ the power line thingy….they do that here…pisses me off soooo badly!! the trees end up totally maimed!

    Have a great weekend, my friend!! *hugs*

  10. Great pictures. I love rock walls and houses with big beautiful covered porches. Also the great homes. It seems like new homes today all look the same.
    We have 2 or 3 pharmacies on every block. That does not include the ones inside other stores.
    I Love Lilacs in Maine. I would have a hundred Lilac trees if I could. The only thing is lilac season is so short.

  11. Nice post Fuzzy. Naturally we have all the drive thrus here. Everything from beer to pizza, even your dry cleaning can be picked up at a drive thru. Makes some kind of statement about our society, and I’m not too sure it is a good one. Everybody wants what they want right now, and with as little human interaction as possible. In fact, most people are so busy, or so they think, that they can’t even squeeze in a hello and a smile to the person working the drive thru window!
    One of the things I love about running is to look at the houses, flowers and landscape in my neigborhood. And it does seem true to me that new neighborhoods are nice, but older ones have a sense of character.
    And as far as the trimming trees to clear the way for power lines, that must be a standard practice because they do that hjere in Ohio also. I have a tree in front of my house that looks like a poster child for deformed tress, due to the power companies line clearing methods.

  12. Weighing in here a little late but late is better than not at all. I too love the turret house, thanks for the great pictures! You know all of those wires running through the tree’s, I wish I could tell you that they were big on conservation and lazy they may be, but it is all about the almighty dollar! Your local Power Company is mandated by the Public Utility Commission (PUC) to have a tree trimming program! Historically this has been outsourced to a Tree Surgeon Company’s, There’s an old saying in the power business, do it cheap and dirty! Many time the Power Company’s will suspend the maintenance program for years at a time! Then we get hit with a powerful storm with high winds and branches break and lines come down. It is then that your power provider will trim the tree’s and pull new wires, it is simply cost effective! Sorry, back to the pictures, I love the array of architecture in New England, it is much like the Central Coast! It reminds me of Carmel, California…I would love to live in any of those homes! I will have to take some pictures of Carmel and post them for you..Have a good weekend Fuzzy….Michael

  13. Really enjoy the personal views from you! And yes, the princess turret house is just…well, perfect! Hugs to my favorite Fuzzy!

  14. Fuzzy, I failed to mention, how much I enjoy driving around during the Christmas Season too. I remember my Mom driving all ten of my siblings around and we would ooh and aw at al of the Decorated Houses, going to a Catholic School, we use to go to the convalescent homes as well as the hospitals and sing Christmas Carroll’s to the patients! It just is a magical time to me, I enjoy it immensely!

  15. Great pictures, Fuzz.
    For a moment there I felt like I am on a legal visit to the US of A.
    Funny things they do to the trees over there…I love the way you posted that picture which you took at an angle, you’re too funny!
    The pretty yard with the tulip is so well kept and the princess turret house looks a little bit like something out of Disney-Land, in other words- magical…:)

  16. Hey Girl, I just love those America houses with the little porches outside with the swing seats. I wish that I had one of them I can just imagien me sat on one reading a book with Marm having a cuddle and a sit beside me. I first saw them in the movie “Sleeping with the Enemy” – fab film that one. Great pictures Fuzz, you getting on with the camera a bit better now then hun. The Turret house was my favourite one and the Three family was also great. Suppose they had bigger familes back when the houses were built and then Gran and Grandad I suppose used to life with the family as well not like here! hugs and love to you and your crowd. x

  17. not as nice as older homes. i’ll try sometime to take some photos of newer housing developments so you can see the cookie cutter crap that they’re building now.

  18. Hei Fuzz.

    Still on holz but will say that tis a great entry
    on your neck of the woods, so tis!
    HUGZ from Ikkle moi to toi. Rii xx

  19. Very nice pics Fuzz. A bit of a window on your part of the world. I have never visited that area of the States, having only been to Florida and New York, but I always think that the housing in the States [and Australia too for that matter] seems more individualistic than over here. Maybe it is to do with the fact that historically we have always had more social housing over here, I don’t know. The little walled in lawn though does remind me of a couple of houses quite close to where I live, that have something similar.

  20. Great pictures I read Ang’s blog, I also love Chick Fil A, they have great chicken and Cheesecake with Straweberry filling. Their chicken salad is the best, they have the best chicken salad sandwich šŸ™‚ I am seeing lot of New Yorkers in this area, and many are moving, so hopefully we will see lot of similarities everywhere :). Hope you didn’t take these pictures when driving. Cheers šŸ™‚

  21. Yay! GG, see that’s what I was thinking; I’d love to see what everyone’s neck of the woods looks like. I really wish I could travel more and see more of the world, and blogging really helps and makes it more personal than just looking at random websites, you know? So get out that camera, Woman! šŸ˜€ Huggs!! xx

    Yay turret house! I love that one, too, Ang. Huggs right back to you šŸ˜€

    Ooooh, Bert, I love lilacs, too! They smell so fabulous you can smell them for blocks, but they really don’t bloom all that long, sadly. Have you tried Yankee Candle’s lilac candle? It’s pretty strong, but very true to the real scent, I think. šŸ˜€

    Human interaction is hard, Michael and takes effort, so I guess people prefer to stay isolated (um, guess I do mostly!). lol @ poster child for deformed trees. šŸ˜€

    Hey other Michael, yes, it makes sense that it’s just cost effective; I should have thought of that one! šŸ˜€ And yay!! Can’t wait to see your pics; how great is that? Wooohooo! šŸ˜€

    Thanks, Gaby, and huggs to my favorite llama lady xx

    Ten kids, Michael?! Holy cow, did you drive around in a school bus to look at the lights? lolol, just teasing you, but that’s a big family in this day and age. Do you have a lot of kids, too? (just curious, don’t feel compelled to answer such a personal Q) šŸ™‚

    Oh, thanks so much, Azad, but they don’t compare to the ones you post of India! šŸ˜€

    lmao, Muske-Fanta, that is too funny . . . legal visit to US. I WISH!!! And yeah, that wonky pic is too funny, but I had to share the tree thing; I had no idea they do that everywhere (apparently); I’d not seen it, but I guess it’s hard to do with palm trees, huh? Huggs to you, Hottie xx

    Thanks so much, Snuggles! And I just loved that movie Sleeping with the Enemy; yeah, that gives a good view of houses from the nice coast ones to the small town, USA ones. But I still think you need to come over here and see them for yourself! Hehe. Huggs to you and yours from me and mine.

  22. Oh, Kerry, you mean the stepford houses that all look alike and have the same everything? Ugh, they do have those here, just not as many, but we had TONS of them down in Florida . . . whole neighborhoods, totally scary same same same . . . ugh.

    I’m SO glad you liked it, Rii! I always so enjoy your photoblogs that this is high praise indeed!! Yay!! Makes me smile. Now get back to your vacation woman and stop reading this drivel from me!! lol xx

    Thanks, Fabi, and I think it would be great to see some pics of your neighborhood, etc. One of these days, I’ll get up to Boston and take some pics of the houses up there, too, not just the row houses you see on tv and in the movies, but some other really interesting things. I think that the architecture is different in each region here in the States; sometimes based on climate, sea level, and sometimes based on how newly developed the area is (but I guess that’s true everywhere). Some of my favorite towns are old southern ones like Savannah, GA; St. Augustine, FL; and New Orleans, LA. Thansk for stopping in.

    Ooooh, Chris, I love the Cheesecake Factory up here, do they have that where you are? Yummy stuff there. I do miss Chik Fil A, though I never had dessert there (that I can remember). And scuffing foot on ground . . . I did take these while driving. That’s bad, huh? Trust you to pick up on that, you are such a good person! Huggs

  23. Thank u so much for this posting! the info is interesting, remarks – sharp and the pics’ collection is on point! I learned some new things and just enjoyed this spirit of american south I heard so much about! thank u hun, great blog and well done!

  24. Now we need to see some pics of your neighborhood/town, Jenia! I’ve never been to Russia, so just about anything you photograph will be new and exciting! šŸ˜€ Huggs to you, dear friend xx

  25. Hey, I know that house!!! It’s kinda funny, it’s generally decorated in a “rustic” style — as you can see by the grapeviney archway and fence, but I would hardly consider that lavender color “rustic”

    And, the garden statuary… fave in “New England White Trash”….. the “Virgin in the uprooted bathtub” motif. You almost captured it with the “Virgin in the Archway” pic, but if you can picture the Virgin standing protected by a bathtub archway….. that’s the look!!!

  26. roflmfao that is SO true! And I know just where to find the bathtub archway, too; you are sooooo funny. :))

  27. Beautiful pics fuzzy, I love the Princess Turret house most. Longing and aching for a holiday in such places. *rolls eyes* pressure of work is sapping.

    Thanks for sharring fuzzy.

  28. Aw, thanks, Mercy (and it’s so fab to see you again!), and I know just what you mean about pressure from work. Well, if you ever do vacation in this area, you MUST let me know! šŸ˜€

  29. Interesting southern take on New England! I guess we do look a little strange sometimes…..but you have to admit, its scenically beautiful. At least in Maine! You should visit Lewiston, Maine if you want to see the Virgin mary in all her glory. Heavy French Catholic population and they can get creative in their displays!!

  30. Soooo much to love up here, River; I hope that I stay here for a good long while yet. šŸ˜€ And I have to come to Maine someday; I’ve never been, and as a big Stephen King fan, I just can’t not go, you know? Besides, from all I’ve seen and heard, it’s truly beautiful country up there. Thanks for the great comments on my blog!! Yay!

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