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Old 04-04-2013, 09:19 AM
 
21 posts, read 47,077 times
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It's a silly question, really, and certainly is shallow, but...how "welcoming" are the residents in Portland for out-of-area re-locators? I've lived all over the south (Florida native, lived in TN, NC, and AR), but it's been my dream to move to the Northeast since my sister moved to NH almost 30 years ago. She told me when they first moved there, they weren't quite ostracized, but the locals didn't really warm up to them until about 15 years ago. In the deep south (not Florida), people are warm, welcoming, and friendly, and neighbors still bring covered dishes to the new people when they move in, but I keep hearing of the insular nature of New Englander's. Yes, it IS my biggest concern for a new place, because Florida is just terrible anymore with the attitude of the residents, and I love a close, nurturing community. I'm not expecting wine and roses when we arrive, obviously, but knowing it's a warm community will help. Thank you for your answers!
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Old 04-04-2013, 09:36 AM
 
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Just returned from our first "fact finding" trip to the Portland area and the thing we kept remarking on was how friendly the people were...my son asked me "Why are you waving to strangers here?" I explained that they were waving to me first, so it was only polite to wave back. Random people smiled and said "hello" to us in stores while doing some light grocery shopping, etc. I even told the manager at our hotel that the most noticeable thing about Maine was how friendly and polite everyone was...WHEREEVER we went, i.e.. not just the tourist spots, but even at places like McDonald's, the gas station, etc. I also compared it to the sort of "friendliness" one receives from down South. Honestly, the Southern hospitality always, well, no offense, seems a tad fake to me. (My family is from the South). And sometimes that "sweetness" is actually an insult wrapped in a candy coated shell ! LOL....Anyway, one of our main reasons for visiting Maine first was to check out that "New England coldness" that we had heard about.
Well, bottom line, nothing could be further from the truth, it's much friendlier and much less pretentious than where we are living now (WA state) and can't wait to move to Maine now. Our house goes on the market next week !
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Old 04-04-2013, 09:52 AM
 
21 posts, read 47,077 times
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Thank you! I agree about some of the "fake" Southern Hospitality (did the term "bless her/his heart" ever seem sarcastic to you?) but I love that you were concerned about the same thing as I. I don't want to move somewhere and be shut out! Good luck with your move, and I'm only *slightly* jealous that you get to move there soon
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Old 04-08-2013, 01:14 PM
 
Location: Cape Elizabeh, ME
404 posts, read 695,791 times
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lol moved here from AL 3 years ago.....Pleased to say I haven't heard the term bless her heart since or what's insinuated by it! I can't speak for ever neighborhood, but my 1st rental neighborhood, no one brought any covered dishes, but when I bought my house I did get more than one, brought over by a new neighbor. All my neighbors wave and are happy to help and strike up conversation. When I lived in AL I rarely talked to my neighbors....they all drive in their garage and put the door down and dissapeared into the house.
The difference you'll find up here is people will talk to strangers, ie when standing on a grocery line, If some one is nice to you they genuinely mean it, if they're unsure about you they won't say anything....if you ask me this is how it should be, but I think that's where the sand offishness idea comes from.
There is a term you'll hear on this board "from away" it's unfortunate, because it does indicate not belonging, but I've rarely heard it in Portland from people I've worked with.
NOw jobs are a bit tougher....but it right or wrong.....companies still prefer to give jobs to locals. And then they all complain when they can't find local tallent....Trick is you have to tell them you have family up here...and you do your sister is in NH.....simply say you've moved here to be closer to family. Its true.
There's also a belief that people will spend 1 winter here and run back to where its warm. Some people have done this, but I think people who think this are projecting....they've lived here all their lives and like to get warm. They don't know what its like not to see season's or snow.....personally I love it!
Lastly, people are VERY pet friendly here...if you have a dog, or get one take em to the dog park you'll meet all kinds of friendly people!
Enjoy....and feel free to Private message me if you have any specific questions, or want to touch base with some one once you arrive!
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Old 04-19-2013, 12:33 AM
 
21 posts, read 43,017 times
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Hello,
So sorry it took me so long to get back to you. We came home and immediately started meeting with agents, doing repairs and cleaning, etc., to get our house market ready. The house went on the market yesterday, so we'll see how long it takes to sell...my next door neighbor sold theirs in ONE HOUR ---for FULL price---I'm so jealous !
What is your timing like ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Morrigan1310 View Post
Thank you! I agree about some of the "fake" Southern Hospitality (did the term "bless her/his heart" ever seem sarcastic to you?) but I love that you were concerned about the same thing as I. I don't want to move somewhere and be shut out! Good luck with your move, and I'm only *slightly* jealous that you get to move there soon
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Old 04-21-2013, 06:45 PM
 
21 posts, read 47,077 times
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Default Thanks!

atrixwolfe - thank you for your comments! Its so helpful, and I love that you know what "bless your heart" REALLY means! I'm glad things are working out up there for you. Yes, we are dog lovers, and have three, so it's good to know that its a pet-friendly town!

NewToNE - Good luck on your listing! I hope it sells quickly for you Our time-frame is anywhere from 1-3 years. We'll be up there next summer for fact-finding, but we want to start a business up there, so we're trying to save as much as possible. One year if we just can't take Florida any longer, 3 if our patience stays with us! Plus, I write novels, and want to take a year off to concentrate on writing, so I have to save money for that too.
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Old 05-12-2013, 02:31 PM
 
2,410 posts, read 5,067,912 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morrigan1310 View Post
It's a silly question, really, and certainly is shallow, but...how "welcoming" are the residents in Portland for out-of-area re-locators? I've lived all over the south (Florida native, lived in TN, NC, and AR), but it's been my dream to move to the Northeast since my sister moved to NH almost 30 years ago. She told me when they first moved there, they weren't quite ostracized, but the locals didn't really warm up to them until about 15 years ago. In the deep south (not Florida), people are warm, welcoming, and friendly, and neighbors still bring covered dishes to the new people when they move in, but I keep hearing of the insular nature of New Englander's. Yes, it IS my biggest concern for a new place, because Florida is just terrible anymore with the attitude of the residents, and I love a close, nurturing community. I'm not expecting wine and roses when we arrive, obviously, but knowing it's a warm community will help. Thank you for your answers!
I don't think your concerns are shallow at all. If I end up moving to the Portland area, I'm interested in the same thing. Just an example of an "unwelcoming" situation: I moved to Minneapolis in 2008, for a short term project and to check it out for possible retirement. I committed to staying a year. Anyway, I have to say, that even though I had contacts from grad school and knew a few people, when I met new people it wasn't a warm reception. I kept getting asked: "why are you here?" When I explained my project, said I had gone to grad school there, and said I was checking it out for possible retirement, etc., they still seemed stand-offish. When I did some sub teaching for a part time job that year, teachers and staff were not welcoming, and many kept asking, "why are you here?" This was true in several different districts. When I was working for a few months on my project at the university, co-workers were not welcoming and I was pretty isolated. Anyway, just an example of getting the "cold shoulder" in a place when it was least expected. I didn't expect anything more than some general friendliness, but the grilling about "why was I there" got old. So, in this move for retirement later this year (possibly Portland), whether or not a city is friendly is important to me also. I think an area with a lot of transplants would be less insular, but that's just my speculation at this point.

On my previous visits to Portland, I felt the residents were friendly. Portland and S Maine are used to a lot of tourists and part-year residents, so maybe that's the difference.
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Old 05-12-2013, 08:40 PM
 
7,029 posts, read 4,233,019 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morrigan1310 View Post
It's a silly question, really, and certainly is shallow, but...how "welcoming" are the residents in Portland for out-of-area re-locators? I've lived all over the south (Florida native, lived in TN, NC, and AR), but it's been my dream to move to the Northeast since my sister moved to NH almost 30 years ago. She told me when they first moved there, they weren't quite ostracized, but the locals didn't really warm up to them until about 15 years ago. In the deep south (not Florida), people are warm, welcoming, and friendly, and neighbors still bring covered dishes to the new people when they move in, but I keep hearing of the insular nature of New Englander's. Yes, it IS my biggest concern for a new place, because Florida is just terrible anymore with the attitude of the residents, and I love a close, nurturing community. I'm not expecting wine and roses when we arrive, obviously, but knowing it's a warm community will help. Thank you for your answers!
Portland has a lot of people from other places. They might not bring you dishes, but they won't ostracize you.

If you were to go to where I grew up, Waldoboro... You're just some out of stater coming by to ruin things for them. It all depends where in Maine you are. Portland and surrounding areas are much more progressive.
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:09 PM
 
721 posts, read 2,420,494 times
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Going to Portland in July for a week for grad school, and I really like Maine and might consider a move if the opporyunity is right. I'm from Northern Minnesota so rough winters don't scare me one bit. How's the job market in Portland? I'm in Health Administration which can transfer to a lit of other fields too, and my wife works at college advising international students.
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Old 05-15-2013, 06:35 AM
 
Location: Cape Elizabeh, ME
404 posts, read 695,791 times
Reputation: 272
There are people who will tell you the job market is bad, but I find, living in portland and working in Portland that th ejob market is surprisingly decent in certain areas. Those would be Tech (Computer-Related) & Health care. So I Advise you to check out How Maine Gets to Work | JobsInME.com which will help give you a picture in your field. We have 2 hospitals here in Portland Maine Med & Mercy, and a smattering of public health and a good number of insurance companies, That's just in Portland.
As for your wife, there a a good number of colleges up here that she can explore, no idea if they are hiring, but I might also suggest a company here in Portland CIEE. CIEE?Nonprofit, NGO leader in international education and exchange since 1947 which deals with international students and study abroad programs & work exchanges, they are a very successful non profit and usually have a few openings. Enjoy your visit in July!
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