Can’t get there from here / No puedes llegar allí desde aqui

La versión en español está después de la versión en inglés.

AN EXPRESSION COMES TO MIND. “Can’t get there from here.” It’s what people in Maine are said to reply when asked for directions. It’s even better in a Downeaster (Maine) accent. [Cahnt get they-ahh from hee-yahhhh.] The reason for this response, so I’ve read, is because the roads in rural Maine are so winding and indirect that it’s impossible to give directions.

The first time San Geraldo and I drove up to Maine from Boston in search of some of his family’s roots, we were looking for Chesterville, the town his great-great-grandparents left when they headed west for Wisconsin and then Dakota Territory. We drove tiny, winding country lanes lined with huge trees and no signs telling us where we were or where we were headed. We even passed a pair of yoked oxen being led across the road. Finally, we came to a general store. The sign read “North Chesterville.” SG went inside and asked if North Chesterville was different from “just plain Chesterville.” The shopkeeper said, “Ah you mean Chesterville Center [Chestah-ville Cen-tah].” He told SG to make a right at the big tree next to the old water pump (or something like that) and continue on until we passed a cemetery on the left and then another general store. That would be Chesterville Center.

So we could get there from there, but it took us another visit and much sleuthing in the library in the big city of Farmington (at the time, 1982, population 7,000) to find the home that SG’s five-greats grandfather built in 1794, as well as the family cemetery.

And I thought of all this because I went for a walk yesterday afternoon and enjoyed a view (and only a view) of an area of Mijas. Obviously, I can get there from here, but it’s not our municipality, so I’m not permitted. We will supposedly know today if we can cross the road again.


UNA EXPRESIÓN VIENE A LA MENTE. “No puedes llegar allí desde aquí” [ Can’t get there from here.]. Es lo que se dice que responde la gente de Maine cuando se les pide direcciones. Es incluso mejor con un acento de “Downeaster” [hacia el este] (Maine). [Cahnt get they-ahh from hee-yahhhh.] La razón de esta respuesta, según he leído, es que las carreteras en la zona rural de Maine son tan sinuosas e indirectas que es imposible dar direcciones.

La primera vez que San Geraldo y yo condujimos hasta Maine desde Boston en busca de algunas de las raíces de su familia,

La primera vez que San Geraldo y yo condujimos hasta Maine desde Boston en busca de algunas de las raíces de su familia, estábamos buscando Chesterville, la ciudad que sus tatarabuelos dejaron cuando se dirigieron al oeste hacia Wisconsin y luego hacia el Territorio de Dakota. Condujimos por caminos rurales diminutos y sinuosos bordeados de árboles enormes y sin señales que nos indicaran dónde estábamos o hacia dónde nos dirigíamos. Incluso pasamos junto a un par de bueyes con yugo que llevaban a través del camino. Finalmente, llegamos a una tienda general. El letrero decía “North Chesterville” [Chesterville del Norte]. SG entró y preguntó si North Chesterville era diferente de “simplemente Chesterville”. El comerciante dijo: “Ah, te refieres al Chesterville Center [Chestah-ville Cen-tah]” [Chesterville el Centro]. Le dijo a SG que girara a la derecha en el gran árbol al lado de la vieja bomba de agua (o algo así) y continuara hasta que pasamos un cementerio a la izquierda y luego otra tienda general. Ese sería Chesterville el Centro.

Así que pudimos llegar allí desde allí, pero nos tomó otra visita y mucha investigación en la biblioteca de la gran ciudad de Farmington (en ese momento, 1982, con una población de 7,000) para encontrar la casa que el cinco tatarabuelos de SG construyó en 1794, , así como el cementerio familiar.

Y yo pensé en todo esto porque ayer por la tarde salí a caminar y disfruté de una vista (y solo una vista) de una zona de Mijas. Obviamente, puedo llegar allí desde aquí, pero no es nuestro municipio, así que no me permiten. Supuestamente sabremos hoy si podemos volver a cruzar la calle.

• The man on the left is in Mijas. I’m in Fuengirola. I probably could have slipped in and no one would have said anything. But rules are rules.
• El hombre de la izquierda está en Mijas. Estoy en Fuengirola. Probablemente podría haberme deslizado y nadie hubiera dicho nada. Pero las reglas son reglas.
And looking back to Fuengirola.
Y mirando hacia atrás a Fuengirola.
A private courtyard on my way home.
Un patio privado de camino a casa.
• I rewarded myself and SG with a Spanish black and white cookie from a local pop-up Christmas pastries shop. The outside is similar to black & whites from New York City. But, ours is a sandwich cookie with cabello de ángel (angel hair) between the layers. Cabello de ángel is a jam made from the pulp of Siam pumpkin and sugar.
• Me recompensé a mí y a SG con una galleta española en blanco y negro de una pastelería navideña local. El exterior es similar ala galleta blanco y negro de la ciudad de Nueva York. Pero la nuestra es una galleta sándwich con cabello de ángel entre las capas. Cabello de ángel es una mermelada elaborada a partir de la pulpa de calabaza de Siam y azúcar.
I got out of bed this morning for another naked sunrise.
Me levanté de la cama esta mañana para otro amanecer desnudo.
Dudo and I went back to bed. This was then our view.
Dudo y yo volvimos a la cama. Este era entonces nuestro punto de vista.

Author: Moving with Mitchell

From Brooklyn, New York; to North Massapequa; back to Brooklyn; Brockport, New York; back to Brooklyn... To Boston, Massachusetts, where I met Jerry... To Marina del Rey, California; Washington, DC; New Haven and Guilford, Connecticut; San Diego, San Francisco, Palm Springs, and Santa Barbara, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Irvine, California; Sevilla, Spain. And Fuengirola, Málaga..

30 thoughts on “Can’t get there from here / No puedes llegar allí desde aqui”

  1. I went to Maine for lunch and a couple of quick photos once. What a great view, how do you avoid reflections in the glass? Here is hoping the next post can be “Why did Mitchell cross the road?”

    1. David:
      The photos from bed are taken with no lights on in the room, so the glass doesn’t present a problem (maybe if it were clean there would be reflections from outside!). I open a panel of the glass curtain for the shots from the terrace.

      Still can’t cross the road. They’ve delayed the decision until Saturday. It’s not looking promising.

  2. LOVE that Maine/New England accent! The deeper you go, the thicker the accent.
    So tempting to cross those imaginary borders……there’s a town in Quebec, Stanstead, that is on the International Border with Derby Line, Vermont……half in Canada and the other half in the USA.
    Great sunrise photos.

    1. Jim:
      I’ll try to take a walk this afternoon that will demonstrate how confusing these municipality borders are. Like Stanstead, some cut right through buildings. The police have said they will obviously not be overzealous in those neighbourhoods.

  3. That’s a pretty amazing view for you and Dudo from bed! I like the tile mosaic in the courtyard — very Spanish. The story about Maine makes me want to visit there. I lived in Manhattan for ten years and I never got up to Maine!

    1. BTW, you can visit Chesterville, Maine, on Google Street View. I just had a nice wander around. Now I don’t need to visit after all! LOL

      1. Steve:
        I did! What fun. More houses there than our last visit around 1990… but not a huge amount. Still no street views of SG’s great-great-great-great-great-grandfather’s road.

    2. Steve:
      I grew up in New York and didn’t get to Maine until SG and I went to do family research. It’s a beautiful state and definitely worth a visit. I should take for granted that view from bed.

    1. Bob:
      The going back to sleep is the problem. I don’t usually wake up in the best frame of mind and having to wake up twice is even worse. But, waking up to that view is incredible. I need to be more grateful.

  4. I love the pictures of the courtyard and the wall mural of the lady, what fun surprises! Your directions gave me a chuckle your gave to San Geraldo . If your on the back roads of Bucks County…. much the same. I remember once getting out of the car to take pictures, and someone asked me for directions. I was like, welllllllll. I told them to just follow me, it was easier. Unless you have GPS…. stick to main roads, unless you want an adventure.

    1. Mistress Maddie:
      Peaking into courtyards around here is really fun. Even more fun was Sevilla, where there were so many old former private palaces. Amazing gardens beyond doors and surrounded by the building. The unwritten rule was if the outer door was open, you were welcome to take a peak.

      Walking around Sevilla was like driving around Maine (or Buck’s County).

  5. Hoping you can get there soon! Love the painted tiles with the strategically placed fan. The sunrise photos each have their own beauty, almost as if they were from different days. I guess that is why I never tire of sunrise (and sunset) photos – there is never a repeat!

    1. Wilma:
      I hadn’t even thought about the fan — assumed there was a low-cut bodice behind it! I agree about sunrise and sunset colors. I often stand there for a half hour taking pictures as the colors change.

  6. Used to camp up at Lake Pemaquid in Maine–near Damariscotta (and if you mispronounce that town, the locals know you are from away). Loved driving the back roads of the various peninsulas up that way…or going up Rockland to take the ferry over to Vinalhaven or going to Camden harbor or hike up Mt Megunticook. Sigh. Good times.

    Do have to laugh about ‘getting out of town’ directions…I remember moving to MN in the early 1970s and going out to the western farm areas. People would tell you to “go west for two miles, turn right at the Smith farm, go north a ways until you see the tallest set of trees and then go west until you reach the old Lutheran church…..” Arggh. Heaven help you if you didn’t know who owned the various homesteads. 🙂

    As always, loving the sunrise photos.

    1. Mary:
      Damariscotta! The only other time I’ve ever heard about the place is when I dated a woman (yes, a woman; it was a long time ago) in Boston who was from there. She even had a T-shirt that read “Where the hell is Dakmariscotta?”

      SG’s mother had no sense of direction. She and a friend were going to visit another friend outside Sioux Falls, SD. It was about a half hour drive. They drive more than an hour, chatting away, before they realised they had crossed the state border. They turned around and drove back, unable to believe they had missed their turn at the blue farm house. His mother was indignant. Someone had gone and painted the farmhouse yellow!

  7. I do believe we have driven through all those places you named along with many more near Hwy 2 after taking NO. 1 along the coast.. We love Maine, New Hamp & Vermont roads and hills. There plenty of “sayings” that we use that go right over people’s heads. I laugh !

    1. Ron:
      Too bad we didn’t know each other when we lived in Connecticut (or even Boston). We could have met halfway!

    1. Debra:
      I’m sure you’re right about that. It would be fun to go back. Those were magical trips of discovery.

  8. If in Maine you cannot get there from here in PEI its the opposite being an Island all roads return to the Capital Charlottetown so you are never going to get lost. Lovely naked sunrise.

    1. Laurent:
      I’m trying to think if I’ve ever lived somewhere where it was impossible to get lost. I don’t think so. Oddly, NYC was the easiest to find your way around. Huge but gridded.

  9. How wonderful to wake up to that view every morning. I open my curtains only to see a wet garden that is gradually going brown for the winter and dull grey skies ! Thanks for sharing the beauty of your view.

    1. Frances:
      I’m glad to share it. Your reaction makes me appreciate it more. I sometimes take it for granted.

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