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November is when things start to wind down here … shorter days, colder nights, fewer leaves. The summer people have gone and everything is stripped-down bare. The stark trees – our beautiful leaves gone now until May – offer wider views but little color; the focus shifts to the wonderful architecture of New England and whatever is left on the ground from autumn.



These photos were taken in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. If you’ve never been to this small city, add it to your bucket list. This is a treasure trove of history with museums, historic architecture, and maritime lore. Portsmouth is completely walkable; put on your walking shoes and visit Prescott Park and the waterfront – the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard is just across the way, where you can sometimes see submarines at the dock (I have a thing for submarines). Strawbery Banke is here too, where 40+ buildings have been assembled to depict life here from 1695 to 1950, complete with interpreters (this is wonderful!). You can climb aboard the USS Albacore, a retired Navy submarine now on dry land that offers tours. Take a harbor tour and learn about nearly 400 years of local history.


A little further down the road you can find Fort Constitution, one of seven forts built to protect Portsmouth Harbor; Wentworth-by-the-Sea, one of the grand hotels of New Hampshire built in 1874 and saved from the wrecking ball a few years ago; and many pull-offs on the side of the road that lead to beaches with views of the Isles of Shoals. I bring visitors here for the shopping and the restaurants but the truth is there is so much more and you cannot see everything in one day.



So … enjoy the photos and celebrate the simplicity of November. Before the snow flies, the blunt beauty of the season is what sustains us.




10 responses to “November

  1. This “visitor” has fond recollections of my time there. Thanks for the memories.

  2. You’ve really captured the hushed mood of pre-winter. The contrasts in the second photo are wonderful.

    Looks like a fantastic place to visit! (All our summer visitors are gone now, too.)

  3. Paige, your posts always remind me why I choose to live in NH. Thank you.

  4. You have made November look stunning! I envy the area you live in. And Portsmouth is a darling town. Speaking of NH peeps, do you follow She lives in NH too. I wonder how close you live to one another…

  5. Hello Paige: Methinks Karen D of ‘backroadjournal’ lives in Danville? And does have a great blog indeed – I hope you have looked at the current entry re her kitchen being photographed for a major magazine for Christmas. Meanwhile love all the autumnal shots from your neck of the woods: would love to be walking there đŸ™‚ ! As a small kid back in N Europe I drove my poor parents batty shuffling in every pile of leaves I could find!!! It was not good for one’s shoes either come to think of it!!!!

  6. Wonderful as always. I enjoyed Portsmouth when Rick and I visited back in 1998. Beautiful area! And, of course, the before and after of Wentworth by the Sea is a favorite memory for both of us!

  7. We (you & me) will be visiting Portsmouth for the historical elements when I visit you some day! What an interesting town. Your pictures capture the essence of the area divinely.

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