It’s hard to find a community with a strong sense of self and connection to one another and the land and sea but I think we found it on our trip to Belfast, Maine. ‘Tis a very dreamy little seaside community and we decided to spend a whole day there after a suggestion from our good friend Danne Dzenawagis (who spent some time there during her time with Project M) and a few good words from my fellow cape cod organic gardeners.
Walking the streets of Belfast I experienced a similar feeling to that which I felt in Alaska – a young and vibrant energy. You had the feeling that people who lived here wanted something different than that of the few generations that came before us had lived/are living still… the homesteaders, the artists, the farmers & fisherman, the young folk fleeing the cities and all the people in between who were just on the path of something a little bit different. It’s as if people (young and old) had moved to Maine to live freely the way they wanted – they didn’t allow the lifestyle they chose to determine what they were going to do or pursue in life .. but instead they chose what was important for them to do and have in their life and let their lifestyle reflect that… that pursuit and confidence is the very energy that made up this community right on the Penobscot Bay.
There was a strong sense of self and awareness in this community – from their local CO-OP and restaurants boasting fresh produce and vegetarian/vegan options to their husband and wife owned multi arts venue, Roots and Tendrils(love that name) to their larger non profit arts center, Waterfall Arts. There is even a cohousing community, the Belfast Cohousing & Ecovillage which is made up of individuals and families working towards a a more cooperative and sustainable way of life for themselves, their community, the land and the sea.
In town we had the pleasure of walking around Roots and Tendrils where we met Meg, one of the owner’s and easily spent an hour in there looking over the wonderful, innovative art, jewelry, clothing, music etc all from local artists living in Maine. The town is also home to Waterfall Arts, their non profit arts center that holds exhibitions, workshops & classes, musical events, open studios and residencies.
The people of Belfast are living truthfully to the state’s motto, “the way life should be” by doing exactly what it is that they want.. by tuning into themselves they forget about the what ifs and just live. I have to say I would have enjoyed spending a few days here – or even a few months but alas time is not always so kind so I’ll take my one day in Belfast, Maine if it means I am able to share it here with you…