What It's Like Growing Up In Aroostook County
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What It's Like Growing Up In Aroostook County

From backroads to potato farms, Aroostook County is a unique place to grow up.

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What It's Like Growing Up In Aroostook County
Young & Free Maine

Growing up in Maine is an adventure in itself, but growing up in Aroostook County is something special. We grow up on outdoor adventures, no matter the season. We survive the six-month-long winters and harvest loads of potatoes every fall. During the school year, we used to get three weeks off just to help local farmers harvest their potatoes. The county is a place where “traffic” is not a never-ending line of cars, but simply one tractor on the road or a moose meandering across the street. We do not grow up chasing city lights, but we live under starry nights. Up here is a simple way of living, and I would not have wanted to grow up anywhere else.

The county is full of small high schools and even smaller towns where everyone knows everyone. Depending on how you look at it, always being recognized can be either beneficial or detrimental. People who are familiar with who you are can be willing to help you with any given task or will recognize you from the sport or musical you pour your heart into. However, everyone knowing each other makes it difficult to get away with things, and when they say news travels fast in small town, they’re not lying. You can always count on running into people you know at any large event or even while filling up your vehicle at a gas station. Our neighbors are not strangers, but are friends, co-workers, family members or classmates.

When something tragic happens, whether it's in our hometown, the next town over or miles up or down, everyone comes together to provide prayers and support. The county is full of generous, caring, supportive people who are always willing to help others.

The county is known for its residents' work ethic. Living up here, you learn how to work hard and get dirty. Hard workers are highly valued, and most employers up here expect no less. If there is one thing the county and its residents teach you, it is that you will never get what you want unless you work hard for it.

It is easy for one to feel isolated from other places. We travel two to five hours just to get to a mall or a chain restaurant. Most of us can get to a Canadian mall quicker than one in Maine. Some of us even have to travel anywhere from 30 minutes to a hour to the nearest Walmart.

We're constantly running into Canadians, aye. Not to say they aren't kind people, they're just bad drivers who purchase all of our gas, produce and meat. We spend our time growing up exploring the woods and being outside. Once we get our first cars, we spend our time cruising on backroads with our friends. Most county citizens, mainly teenagers, complain about there being nothing to do. There is always something to do, it just usually involves being outdoors and getting creative.

Waking up with deer or moose in our backyards is not uncommon, and for some, it's even a daily occurrence. The vast amount of wildlife right in our backyard is never disappointing to see, unless it's a skunk, obviously. Of course, if you're a hunter, seeing a six-foot-tall moose in your backyard is just taunting, especially if it's not moose season.

Life in the county is simple and peaceful. The county may not have your favorite place to shop or be close to cities you want to visit, but this is where your friends and family are. This is where our roots are planted. The county is our home, and it's a place we can always return to.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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