From the Office and Backyard to the Road, Boat, or Plane–Backstories and
Side Stories While on Assignment. Updates on Personal Projects, Too.

Archive for January, 2012

After a snowy night in Portland we’re up early, and soon we’re onto ME-26 and driving north on a route that passes Gray, Bryant Pond, and Paris. “Everywhere, the landscape is buried, and branches of the spruce and pines droop downward with the white weight of snow… Not far from the white steeples of Bethel, we come upon a curved orange vision at the roadside. It’s the vintage camper on Route 2 that’s been converted into a barbecue stand. Smoke is rising through the snowflakes from a hulking back smoker… in the car, the little containers of extra BBQ sauce get lined up on the dashboard and before we’re out of the parking lot, we’re tasting the pulled pork, baked beans, cornbread and slaw.”

That’s an excerpt from our feature “The S-Factor” in the new issue of Maine magazine with PFE‘s dreamy, drifted image on the cover. We had some terrific days of ski time, fireplace-warming, and an outdoor swim in a heated pool as the flurries flew.

Here‘s more of the account of our road trip to Sunday River, Saddleback and Sugarloaf, with “slope-side stories of epic snows, fireside proposals, and smoky barbecue for the ski and snowboard set.”

– Sandy Lang, January 2012

Loved getting back to New Orleans for “Crescent City Christmas,” an eight-page feature in the December 2011 issue of Southern Living. From the opener:

CRESCENT CITY CHRISTMAS: In New Orleans, traditions are as thick as roux. To get your fill in December, just follow the firelight.

You’ll see a Dixieland Santa Claus/ leading the band to a good old Creole beat/ Golly, what a spirit, you can only hear it/ down on Basin Street.

When Louis Armstrong put his rolling, gravelly vocals to smooth brass on the swinging 1955 recording of “Christmas in New Orleans,” the distinctive holiday appeal of his hometown was set. Armstrong’s voice is like New Orleans itself—a blend of rough edges and refinement, unlike anything else. And in December, the well-worn and mightily loved Crescent City is decked out in lights, bows, and sparkle, ready for the season’s pageantry. Fetes start early, with a month of Réveillon dinners—often all-evening affairs where the Cajun-spiced and Creole-sauced courses keep coming. Celebrations culminate with towering bonfires ablaze on the levees, lighting up the bayou on brisk, year-end nights…’Cause it’s Christmastime in New Orleans

Along the way, photographer Peter Frank Edwards and I met with old friends and made some new ones in the French Quarter and Uptown. In the printed magazine, the story begins on page 46, or you can find the full text online here. Meanwhile, many thanks to many NOLA friends, including Townsend, Peggy, Michael, Lisa and Lynn. Hope to see you again soon for jazz or a cocktail!

– Sandy Lang, January 2012

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Food, In print/published, Travel

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