A Mainer’s Sunday

This is the first installment of a new monthly segment highlighting a Mainer’s Sunday Routine. I reached out to both Congressional candidates running for the 2nd District and Emily Cain agreed to participate.

Cain                                     Emily Cain. BDN file photo by Ashley Conti.

Emily Cain served in the Maine Senate from 2012 to 2014, representing the 30th district which includes part of Penobscot County and was previously a member of the Maine House of Representatives from 2004 to 2012, where she also served as Minority Leader from 2010 to 2012. Ms. Cain is currently the Democratic nominee for the U.S. House of Representatives for Maine’s 2nd congressional district.

Running for Congress gets pretty busy. My Sundays are particularly special because we can take time to make longer trips, to Oxford or Washington or Aroostook counties, and everywhere in between. I consider myself lucky – not only to get to see so much of Maine, but to get to spend it with people who have real hopes, fears, and worries that deserve to be heard and shared. It can sound like a cliché, but I truly believe that every conversation makes my life richer.

Usually, I get up early, because this is the one day that I can squeeze in a load of laundry, clean up the dishes, make a quick trip to the grocery store, or catch up on a pile of mail from the week before. Sunday mornings are usually quiet, while my husband Danny is still sleeping, and you will find me at my desk or in my kitchen, with frequent trips to switch the laundry in the basement. Finding that hour or two to cook, clean, get organized or do laundry gives a sense of normalcy and completion during a time where things are in constant motion.

Family Traditions I’m Catholic and church was always a big part of our Sunday family routine. That’s where I learned to sing, in the choir. When I think about the time I spend nowadays “getting ready” for the week, I think about my dad. Getting ready meant my dad packed his bags, because as a shoe salesman, he traveled every week and on Sunday night he got ready to be on the road. My mom juggled her own schedule between work and the carpool demands of three busy daughters. But on Sunday night, we had dinner as a family. That time together was special to me, and I try to bring that sense of community into my Sundays now, whether it’s family, friends, or just Danny and me.

Community Events I go to a lot of events and Maine is one-of-a-kind with our mix of fairs, parades, and festivals. I was recently at the Windsor Fair and took part in the “Political Pull,” a cow-milking competition between candidates for office. I’m proud to say I took third out of a field of eleven candidates, but at the end, one of the local farmers took a turn and blew us away.

Emily Cain at the Political Pull                                           Emily Cain at the Political Pull

More Community Events on a recent trip to the Oxford 250, I went to the tailgate and had an incredible time. I met a sheet metal worker from Farmington who told me he hasn’t worked in Maine for the past few years, but has been working out of state. He packs his bags on Sunday nights and leaves his family for most of the week, just like my dad did. That’s because the work he used to do here was to themills and factories that are closed now. He wants to be able to come back and work here in Maine like he used to.Oxford 250

Friends and Family if I’m home in time for dinner on Sunday, it’s usually late, but Danny waits so we can eat together. Either I cook at home, or we walk into Orono to Pat’s Pizza – a meal we’ve enjoyed together for more than 15 years. When you run for office, you have to have a very supportive family and especially patient friends. I’m so grateful that I do. I wouldn’t trade my time out on the road for anything, but those quiet Sunday evenings together are a precious bit of calm in an otherwise wild world.

Phillip Potenziano

About Phillip Potenziano

In addition to blogging, Dr. Potenziano works as an Assistant Superintendent, and volunteers on the board of a southern Maine local non-profit. He is happily nestled just north of Portland, with his 3 kids, a wife and lots of projects awaiting his attention. He loves early morning runs, donuts and sometimes coffee. Two lessons he tries to remember are: "Every man is my superior in that I may learn from him" and "At the moment of commitment, the entire universe conspires to assure your success."