March 25th marks the celebration of Maryland Day, which marks the date 381 years ago when settlers first came ashore on Clements Island in Southern Maryland. My ancestors were not too far behind the earliest settlers and one of our family houses still stands in St. Mary’s County.
A few years ago, Katie Denham challenged bloggers to come up with five things they love about their state. So in honour of Maryland Day 2015, I will take up the challenge again.
1. THE CHESAPEAKE BAY
The Chesapeake Bay divides Maryland’s Eastern and Western Shores. It’s 180+ miles from where it starts with fresh water from the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania and from the Adirondack Mountains in New York, to where it meets the ocean off the coast of Virginia.
So many activities around our part of Maryland involve the Chesapeake. From sailing to fishing to crabbing, there’s always plenty to do. It’s always great to have friends who have houses on the water, so you can spend a day on the Bay.
2. THE HISTORY
As I frequently say, Baltimore’s Not Just The Wire! It’s a big small town, and people here call it Smalltimore. It’s the kind of place where you run into friends you’ve known for years while shopping in the grocery store, you navigate by landmarks which have not been there for decades, you spend a minute or two triangulating with new friends to figure out who you both know.
4. THE TRADITIONS
I do some of the same things my parents and grandparents did, like attending the horse-races in the spring. Now my nieces and nephews are attending the races, continuing the tradition for another generation.
5. THE QUIRKS
There’s a secret short-hand language that only the natives know, and it’s always fun to run into someone from Baltimore when you’re not here and know what the other person’s saying. The people are quirky in their own ways, but no one thinks that it’s odd.
In a coming together of several of the above traits that I love about Maryland, this picture exemplifies several of them. Our mothers were at school together (tradition), he is good friends with some of my good friends (Baltimore) and we’re both a little off center (quirky).