My wife and I recently returned from a temporary job assignment in New Hampshire.
I didn’t know much about the state when I accepted the assignment. I’d only been to New Hampshire once in my life, and that was to stop in Manchester for lunch many years ago on a trip with my son.
It’s hard to gauge a state when you’ve only spent a few hours there. But if you’ve lived there a few months, you at least know it better than the average tourist would.
After living in New Hampshire, I must say … I love New Hampshire!
In fact, let me share with you ten things I loved about New Hampshire … and New England as well:
Number 10: I loved the relaxed feel. New Hampshire has three main cities: Concord, Manchester, and Nashua. I visited all of them, but never found the traffic to be oppressive … like it is here in Southern California … except for a shopping trip to Costco one Saturday in Nashua.
Here’s a photo of downtown Portsmouth … right on the border before entering Maine …
Number 9: I loved Dunkin’ Donuts. One night, my wife and I were lost in Connecticut, and I looked at the map and saw I would have to drive toward New Haven on a single lane highway. After many miles of traveling in the dark, my wife and I wanted something warm to drink, so I was hoping we’d come to a Dunkin’ Donuts. When we saw light ahead, I told my wife, “I’ll bet there’s a Dunkin’ Donuts there” … and I was right.
In New England, where there’s light, there’s Dunkin’ Donuts.
Number 8: I loved being surrounded by trees. There were two Target stores in our area, and whenever we’d drive to either one, I’d get out of the car, turn around … and see trees everywhere! For someone who tends toward depression due to the brownness of the desert, the perpetual green of New Hampshire continually lifted my spirits.
Number 7: I loved visiting graveyards. Before you conclude that I’m morbid and twisted, please understand that one of my small hobbies is visiting the graves of famous people. In California, you can visit the graves of Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan … but you have to pay to enter their presidential libraries. But in New England, you can visit the graves of former presidents for free … and there’s nobody around when you do.
Here’s the famous Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Concord, Massachusetts:
And here’s Mount Auburn in Cambridge, Massachusetts … the first landscaped cemetery in the United States … which dates all the way back to 1831:
Number 6: I loved the fall foliage. We arrived in Manchester in early September, so we were privileged to watch the trees turn colors over the next few weeks. Driving to and from church – 27 miles each way - was fun because of all the colors we’d see along the roads.
Here are some trees in upstate New Hampshire:
I’ll finish this Top Ten List next time. Watch for it!