Sixty-Six, for Sixty Six, Part LVI: Return to Down East, Part 1- Green Acre

July 16, 2017, Eliot, ME-

I had anticipated visiting relatives, outside the immediate family, today.  I just was not sure which ones.  Last night, I got a message from a long-lost cousin, saying that he couldn’t meet with me this time around, but would I please consider visiting his mother, my paternal aunt, on her birthday.

It’s been 28 years, since I last set foot in the State of Maine.  My last visit there didn’t go very smoothly, and I have been embarrassed to return to the last place I stayed.  This time, though, I was determined to make it a good day.

I started out at Green Acre Baha’i School, located  in Eliot, just over the Piscataqua River from Portsmouth, NH.  The property, once owned by a spiritualist, was deeded to the Baha’i Faith by Sarah Farmer, after ‘Abdu’l-Baha visited the property, in 1912, and told Ms. Farmer that he foresaw a great center of learning rising there.

It is, at present, a vibrant place of spiritual education, and Green Acre has forged strong ties with the surrounding communities.  I spent about two hours there, before heading up to York.  A high point is always visiting the room where ‘Abdu’l-Baha stayed, during his visit.

Here are some scenes of Green Acre:

The first building that greets the visitor is a large classroom center.

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The administration building and registrar’s office is located diagonally across the street.

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The administrator’s residence is next to the registrar’s office.

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Overlooking it all is the majestic Sarah Farmer Inn.  Students in the various programs, which are generally a week or two in length, stay in this Victorian establishment.

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One may walk down to the banks of the Piscataqua River, across which is Portsmouth, New Hampshire’s only seaport

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The Great Lawn offers a sweeping view of the campus.

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Back in the Sarah Farmer Inn, I recalled having sat and meditated in the parlour, on a previous visit.

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Upstairs, one may pray and meditate in the room where ‘Abdu’l-Baha stayed.  After  I had done so, with three other people praying in the room, it was most prudent to take this photo, from outside the room itself.

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Upon leaving the Sarah Farmer Inn, I was informed that there was a picnic and barbecue outside, which I promptly joined.  A pleasant meal of chicken and several vegetarian dishes, and a chance meeting with friends from Arizona made for a fine ending to this short visit.

I had gathered both nutritional and spiritual sustenance, which would carry me safely onward, eventually back to Arizona.  This day, however, would bring further joys into view: Stonewall Kitchen, where my aunt works; Old York; York Harbor and the Mason Preserve, and a nice little gathering, in auntie’s honour.  Stay tuned.

 

7 thoughts on “Sixty-Six, for Sixty Six, Part LVI: Return to Down East, Part 1- Green Acre

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