Impressions of an Outsider

For those of you who may not know, we have a new face in the Aroostook Aspirations Initiative office.  We asked Sarah to share her initial impressions of Aroostook County and this is what she had to say.  

“My name is Sarah.  I’m an outsider in Aroostook County.  Three weeks ago I moved from Pittsburgh, PA to Presque Isle with no idea whatsoever of what I was getting myself into. When I arrived, everyone asked me the same question: Why? Why would I move here? Why would I choose to come to Aroostook County? These questions disturb me every time I hear them. If nobody had ever asked me these questions, then I would have no reason to think that there was anything odd in my choice.

I have only been in the County for three weeks, but I am already in love with it. The scenery is gorgeous, the people are friendly and helpful, the potato blossoms are cheery and the roads are wonderful to drive on. Never underestimate a well-kept road.

Also, as an outsider I find it incredible that the communities in Aroostook all throw festivals every year. I think it’s amazing that the colleges up here cost so much less than any of the schools I’ve ever visited, and yet are still able to offer most of the same programs. There is an elderly Elvis impersonator who travels around to participate in as many parades as he can. How cool is that?

I knew none of these things before I moved here, but now that I do, I count myself lucky for ending up in such a wonderful place. The one thing I would change? The questions. When people ask me why I chose Aroostook it makes me think that they think there is something wrong with it. I wish that people would realize how lucky they are for living here. So, why did I choose Aroostook? Well… why wouldn’t I?”

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Sarah Altomari is the AmeriCorps VISTA working at the Aroostook Aspirations Initiative office.  She is working to get people more involved in their communities. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, DIY projects and loving her cat, Dexter.