Northern New England is my favorite place. It just feels like home. You will rarely catch me venturing south of the New Hampshire border unless I’m in the mood for some Boston food and even then it would have to be a significant hankering.
It’s not that there isn’t anything beautiful south of the border, it just doesn’t “feel” right to me. Too busy, too congested.
Even as people from Massachusetts begin to drift ever north I find myself looking in the other direction. In fact I can’t tell you the last time I went to Manchester or any parts south of there.
Sadly the New Hampshire I grew up with and raised a family in is ever changing and I am always looking for things to stay the same…simple, quiet, beautifully secluded.
All the pictures you see of New Hampshire are quaint villages with white steeples with surrounding hillsides dotted with farms. Cows lazily graze in the fields along with the occasional sheep, goat or chicken. Colorful maple trees run along old stone walls marking the lines of days gone by. Dirt roads beckon you to see what’s just around the corner. Old cemetery plots are reminders of a harsh history with sturdy people.
This is the New Hampshire that I grew up loving and still long for today. I am privileged to be able to continue to live this dream. I wake up to the sound of a rooster, much to my boyfriend’s chagrin. Goats and sheep graze right in my backyard and if you listen carefully, the soulful moo of cows can be heard in the not too far distance. A stonewall with trees that brighten the sky in fall run along two sides of my property while fields open up views in every direction. A non-town maintained dirt road offers the solitude of an afternoon walk communing with nature.
Sure we have our downsides, too. Property taxes are the second highest in the nation. Electric rates are almost sixty percent higher than the national average. Subdivisions pop up in what was once historic farming communities way too often. And just like the rest of the nation we have our drug crisis and crime.
Still, when you look at the big picture, I’ve got it pretty good. An easy walk down an old dirt road lined with stone walls, apples trees and wildlife is all I need to shed the burden and stress of daily life. A quick hug from a tiny goat, the cluck of a few chickens scratching in the yard, the smell of herbs in the garden as the morning sun warms the leaves…Yep, it doesn’t get much better than this.