From Grafton Center

First, just wanted to point out a new page on the blog – I made up a FAQ list. And sorry the photos were cut off on the right side; I will need to work on those when I return home.   

Alright! After a fun wedding and a four day break, I am on the road again! Today I walked from Cherry Valley in Leicester, down Route 9 into Worcester, through Webster Square, down Cambridge Street, had lunch with my aunt who is an admin at Holy Cross College, back on Cambridge Street, through the I-290 construction (Worcester’s Own Big Dig!), down Dorchester Street, onto Grafton Street, through Milbury, and into Grafton. Tonight I am staying with another cousin who lives on 140, just off the center of town. In case you wondering where all the relatives suddenly came from, I’m part of a large Italian Catholic family. My Mom grew up on Gage Street in Worcester and had three sisters and eight brothers – 12 kids altogether. I’m an only child, but I have cousins, second cousins, and cousins once removed all over Worcester County. I remember going to the mall as a kid and my Mom suddenly meet someone, talk to them, and turn to me and say, This is Aunt so-and-so’s saon’s daughter. And they would have kids, and we would just kind of look at each other thinking, Do I have to buy you a Christmas Present?

My aunt Rose has a ton of stories about growing up on Gage Street, and the main characters always have two things in common: their last name always ends in a vowel, and their first name ends in a “-ie.” Donnie Porcollo, Angie Mercado, Johnny Francini, Bobby Deniro. I swear, if you’ve got a little Worcester Italian in you, we’re either related, our parents grew up together, or our parents ran from the cops together.

Where was I? Oh yeah, first day back and it was a rough 15 miles. Worcester has seven famous hills, and I got to climb two of them – Holy Cross and Vernon. The weather was gray all day, and rain in the afternoon. At least it was a warm rain, until about 5 pm then it just got cold. I was soaked, and somewhere on Grafton Street I lost my walkacrossmass.com sign. The cardboard got soaked and just fell right off. Grrr. That was the famous sign from the photo in the T&G. Guess I’ll have to make a new one.

Anyways, I got about three hours of sleep last night, so I should really get to be early tonight. Tomorrow I am hiking into Milford or Franklin (anyone know anyone who will let me pitch a tent there?) and Thursday night I hope to be in Wrentham where I’ll be staying with – you guessed it – another cousin :)

By the way, here is another article on the walk, this one from Worcester’s Indy Media. Big thanks to intrepid reporter D.O., and big thanks to Kevin who mailed me the link.

http://worcester.indymedia.org/news/2006/10/4584.php

More tomorrow!  

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