4 Unusual Things You Should Expect to See in Maine That Will Surprise People From Away
Editor's note: This article was written by a Townsquare Media Northern New England contributor and may contain the individual's views, opinions or personal experiences.
No matter where you move or travel to, you will see or witness something that may not be normal for you. When I moved to Maine, I learned that there are many things that I needed to adjust to.
Maine is home to some beautiful places and also a lot of haunted areas, however, I became very surprised when I learned about some places, things, and laws in Maine.
BMV vs. DMV
Just like many other individuals, I am used to going to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to register my car and get my license. Well, good luck if you try to find a DMV in Maine.
It's not that they don't have a place to get your license, you will just have to go to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV). It's also important to note that depending on which BMV you go you, you may not be able to register your car. That's right, you may also have to make a trip to City Hall to get that done.
OUI vs. DUI
In Maine, it is legal to drink alcoholic beverages as well as use any variety of marijuana for anyone that is 21 or older. Just like many places, Maine doesn't want you driving under the influence. Driving under the influence, otherwise known as a DUI, can get you in trouble with the police. However, in the state of Maine, you will not get a DUI.
I'm not saying that you will not get in trouble, don't get me wrong you still will. In Maine, instead of getting a DUI, you would get an OUI (Operating Under the Influence).
Interesting License Plates
Living in Maine, I now find myself looking at everyone's license plates while I walk through a parking lot. There are so many people in Maine that choose to have a vanity plate with what they want to say.
There was once a time, when almost anything could be placed on a vanity plate in Maine, however, according to the Press Herald, as of 2021 new laws allow the Maine Secretary of State to reject vanity license plates that include hate speech, violence, obscenity and are sexually explicit. Therefore, you can be creative in picking a new plate for your vehicle, however, there are limitations.
There are always strange laws wherever you go, and it's not always easy to know what they are. However, there are some in Maine that may come as a shock.
One law that I honestly don't mind is that Christmas decorations cannot be up all year. That's right if you are someone that likes to keep your decorations up after January 14th be prepared for an after-holiday gift, a nice fine. Just kidding, this "law" has actually been debunked by Press Herald. You can actually see some holiday lights up on houses all year round (just lights, we are not talking lawn decorations here).
If you want to get into weird in Portland, just know it's probably not best to bring a feather duster. It seems that it is illegal for a man to tickle women under the chin with a feather duster in Portland. However, there is nothing against a woman doing it to a man, so ladies go at it!
If you move or live in Rumford, ME, then be sure to know that it is actually illegal to bite your landlord under any circumstance. Now why is this illegal in one place in Maine, I am not sure. I would highly recommend not biting your landlord (or anyone for that matter, unless that's what you're into) no matter where you live, but hey, if you have a pet there's nothing against your pet biting your landlord.
All in all, Maine is an amazing state, it just may take some time to learn everything that goes on here.