Mia and I just spent the last week back in New Hampshire visiting for the first time in 16 months (excluding my whirlwind trip for my grandfather’s funeral).
Before moving out to Oregon, I had basically spent my whole life living in New Hampshire, and excluding college in Plymouth, NH never more than 20 miles from my hometown of Bow, NH. Mia spent some time in her post high school years working out at the Grand Canyon, but eventually ended up back in New Hampshire.
To say that the past 16 months have been crazy is a bit of an understatement. I’m the first to admit that in late 2012, early 2013, I never thought I would be moving to the other side of the country. However, this job opportunity presented itself and in just shy of 3 months we visited, I interviewed, we packed our house and moved 3,000 miles.
We got the typical “when are you moving back” questions. The reply really is we don’t know. We really enjoy it here, jobs are going well, the outdoor recreation is just amazing, and well….it is what it is. We both know deep down in our hearts that we will retire back in New England (not necessarily NH) but that is 20 years away. As things stand now, it is Oregon for the foreseeable future.
We have both made the promise to not wait 16 months to return to NH though. Perhaps we can convince more of our family to visit us here? We for sure have the space.
We basically spent the first two days eating and hanging with family. A BBQ at Mia’s sister’s place on Sunday and then basically the same thing at my parents house on Monday, after Paul and I did a 6.8 mile trail run, the humidity killed me, it’s not something I miss very much.
The whole trip did start off with a trip for dinner to “The Local Eatery” in Laconia. Fabulous food, great company too. They did overcook my gnocchi a bit, but everything else was very good. I especially liked the zucchini fitters.
Tuesday Paul and I got some brotherly bonding time by hiking the Hancocks. He needed them for his 4,000 Footer of NH list. Based on earlier emails, I thought we were doing the Carter Range, but he had his geography/mountains mixed up.
After originally bagging these two peaks for my 4K list, I said I would never do them again, just not overly inspiring. Well, this was now my 3rd trip up them, so I guess never say never……
It was quite a hot and muggy day in the valley. At the top, we had a nice breeze to cool off, but still had the mugginess to deal with.
Tuesday night I got to hit up Dos Amigos for the first time in 16 months. Also walked around town noticing how much and how little has changed with downtown Concord.
Wednesday Mia visited with Tina Poirier and her Living Yoga pals, while I again did a longer loop of walking around Concord. I do say, I miss the older colonial and cape style homes we have in New England. There is so much new building in our area of Oregon. Yes, there are plenty of older areas, old homesteads, and history here, but New England has a couple hundred years on Oregon as far as settlement and development goes. As we drove through Nottingham, NH on Thursday, there were signs proclaiming it’s 250th anniversary celebration coming up.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not bashing Oregon, when you think about it, the age of European cities puts us Americans to shame. I’m just calling it as I see it.
Thursday was a fun day for both of us too. I went to get a fitting for a new bike at Independent Fabrications in Newmarket, NH. It is my first custom bike ever, and I wanted to keep it in the New England family. I.F. won out over Seven, Firefly, and several other notables. It’s a bit nerve wracking. Will they build it right? Will I really like it? My fitting with them went really well, and we made very few changes from my current setup. I told them that after 26 years of racing and riding, I would have been surprised it we made any major changes. Especially since I feel the Look 555 has been the best fitting bike I have ever had to this point.
After the fitting with I.F., we spent some time at good ol’ Hampton Beach.
It was literally the quietest I have ever seen it. Basically it was Thursday, not a weekend. Kids are back in School, and Seafood-fest started the next day. Which will mean huge crowds for the weekend.
It was also a bit strange to not have any dogs on the beach. We’ve grown quite accustomed to that out here.
Also got to visit an old childhood favorite……
Friday went by way too fast. Mia and I celebrated 10 years of Marriage on Friday, and got to spend it with our parents for breakfast at Tuckers in Hooksett. My parents were celebrating their 47th anniversary the next day! Then we spent the evening with a bunch of friends at The Barely House for those last few hours of visiting.
Mia and want to thank everyone for coming out to see us during the week, we did not get to visit with everyone we had hoped, but we do promise that it won’t be 16 months before we make another return trip.
Thanks for reading,