DEAR SUN SPOTS: Where can I get an original Maine flag with the pine tree and star? I saw one on a flagpole when I was driving through Bowdoinham and really want to have one of my own and possibly purchase some as gifts for next Christmas. — Lacey, no town

ANSWER: Isn’t that a nice flag? I like it very much, too. This original Maine flag, which features a unique pine tree and star design, flew over Maine from 1901 to 1909. Now, more than a century later, Mainers are displaying our state’s first flag again. I think it’s awesome!

The original Maine flags are handmade in Maine by the Maine Flag Co., using a traditional appliqué technique. You can order one of four different sizes from the Maine Flag Co.’s “Original Maine” project at These flags are made to order and take about two weeks. The prices are $55 and up, depending on what size you would like and there is no shipping fee. The company also has other items featuring this simple design such as hats, shirts, pins and home décor items.

There is a store at 20 Hampshire St. in Portland, open by appointment only. You can reach the company by emailing [email protected] or calling 619-2626.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: I am writing to thank the person who paid it forward at Blackie’s on Minot Avenue on Christmas Eve. Imagine my surprise when the cashier said, “You are all set”, when I went to pay for my two dozen eggs. She said a customer had left money to pay it forward until the cash ran out. Thank you, whoever you are! My Mom and my family appreciate it! Happy New Year. You made my day. — No name, Mechanic Falls

ANSWER: Just think if we all did this once in a while. What a better place this world would be! I hope you’ll all think about it. It doesn’t have to be about spending money either. Many acts of kindness are free. Go forth, all you Sun Spotters, and make someone’s day sweeter.

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite Rumi quotes: “Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder. Help someone’s soul heal. Walk out of your house like a shepherd.”

DEAR SUN SPOTS: I’m a server who works at a small local diner. Our food is very good and we are normally busy, but because of the COVID case numbers climbing, we have not been even as busy as we were even just a few weeks ago.

Two days before Christmas, a group of six men all came in together and sat at our biggest table. They ordered a lot of food as well as whole pies to take home. It was the biggest order we’ve had in weeks and I was happy to serve them. They paid in cash and left me a Christmas card in an envelope signed “Santa Claus.” When I opened it, there was more cash enclosed that was the same amount as their entire order had been! I was just stunned by their generosity and still can’t believe it. I promise to pay it forward! — No name, no town

ANSWER: Sharing these stories makes me so happy!

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name. We won’t use it if you ask us not to. Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to [email protected].

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