FORT KENT – Life just seems slower and more relaxed up here, reported someone from away yesterday.
“It’s nice to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city,” reported Gary Hobson of Presque Isle while vacationing in Fort Kent yesterday. “It’s refreshing to experience a different pace of life.”
Hobson, 38, delivered his statement to a waitress at the Swamp Buck Restaurant after she asked how he and his family were enjoying their vacation. Hobson’s wife, Cheryl, and their two children, Blake, 11, and Evan, 8, amused themselves with electronics while he offered his assessment of their experience.
“We’re just up for a few days to see the sights and get a little camping in,” explained Hobson. “I could never live here, though. There’s not enough to do. Coming from the largest city in Aroostook County, it’s a little bit of a shock at first, to be in the sticks, but then it feels really refreshing.”
Hobson is not alone in his observations. In fact, University of Maine at Fort Kent professor Wanda Lafeilleiere published a study in 2010 indicating that life slows down the further north you travel.
“We found that people in Massachusetts move and talk 22% slower than people in New York,” stated Lafeilleire. “And people in Southern Maine are likewise about 26% slower than people in Massachusetts.”
She says the trend continues at least as far as Rimouski, Quebec (3 hours north of Fort Kent), where people take an average of three hours to eat each meal and rarely shift out of first gear when driving.