The Alexander Home Page presents
Alexander's New England Odyssey
Acadia National Park

Alex atop Cadillac Mountain Alex on the top of the world, or, at least, on top of Cadillac Mountain.
Alexander and his parents spent a good part of their visit to Maine in Acadia National Park, just outside of Bar Harbor. Acadia features steep granite cliffs, nature trails through dense forests that lead to the ocean, and some of the most picturesque scenery in the Eastern United States.

At Acadia National Park Alexander and his mother.
Plenty of rocks to climb on Alex found plenty of rocks to climb on at Acadia.
For a young boy Alex's age, the best parts of Acadia were the many rocks that were there to be climbed on. There is no shortage of pink granite boulders in Acadia, and Alex wanted to test each and every one of them. While atop Cadillac Mountain, the highest peak in Acadia, Alex was being particularly daring while scampering over the boulders. Climbing, boulders, and mountaintops are not always the favorite combination, however, for parents of small children. Alexander's parents had to take turns "spotting" him as he explored. At one point, while lunging to get into the proper protective position, Alex's father tore a gaping hole in the thigh of his pants. (This necessitated an emergency trip to the pants department of a nearby Wal-Mart.)

The wooded nature trails provided enjoyable outdoor experiences. They offered views of mountains that looked like bubbles, and other mountains that looked like porcupines, at least to the imaginative people who named them. While walking through the woods, Alex would stop, cup his hands to his ears, and listen for the sounds of wildlife. His mother pointed out the sound of a squirrel rustling in the trees. And Alex himself claimed to have heard a giraffe stomping through the woods.

One trail led to a foul smelling swamp. The ground underfoot was a big muddy sponge, and there was an overwhelming stench of, well, what is technically known as "smelly swamp stuff." It was here that Alex decided to stop and picnic. He sat on a log amidst the stink, and ate a package of "stop sign crackers" while his parents waited patiently and held their noses. When a cracker would fall into the muck, Alex's father would stomp on it before the oblivious little boy could scoop it up and put it into his mouth.

One of the feature attractions at Acadia is Thunder Hole, a small seaside cave at water
Thunder Hole Thunder Hole
level that, when the tide comes in, causes loud explosive noises. The water rushes in to the cave and, as it recedes, comes rushing out with a boom that sometimes sounds like thunder. When Alex was there, Thunder Hole was relatively tame, but it was making enough noise to make him uneasy. He preferred to look at Thunder Hole from a distance. The visit did make an impression on him. Months later, back at home, he still refers to the space under the sofa cushions in his living room as "Thunder Hole." (Why? Nobody knows for sure. It may have to do with "under" sounding like "thunder," but Alex isn't saying.)

After Acadia National Park, Alexander's New England odyssey would continue, in Plymouth, Massachusetts.