One thing (amongst millions of others, obviously) I love about the US are the (mostly) retired guides they have in churches, old houses, museums. I absolutely love them and found out that they have a profound knowledge of not only the place they work at but of history (American and other) in general. What amazes me most is that these people are usually volunteers!
If you happen to travel the States and be in such a place - talk to them! You will be amazed. I was.
I talked to this gentleman at the small but cute Lighthouse Museum of Pemaquid Point.
He looked so incredibly old (his skin was like leather) that I supposed he must have spent his whole life on or around the water or at least outdoors. I didn't dare to ask for more details though.
He explained all about lobster fishing and how lighthouses are working. I could have listened to him for hours but unfortunately other tourists came in and he had to take care of them. Imagine listening to stories about his life as a fisherman or to adventures on the Sea (well, the guy could have been a farmer by all means but not in my imagination!).
In Portland I came upon this other guy who worked at the Observatory. An excellent story teller! For the duration of the tour I traveled back in time.
The most amazing guide though was this elderly lady (a former teacher) at this church in Portland:
I am grateful that they shared their knowledge with me!