First, this post is dedicated to Marine Officer, Central Mass. resident and fellow St. John’s alum Joshua L. Booth. He was shot and killed by a sniper on Tuesday night while leading his platoon in Haiditha, Iraq. He leaves behind a wife, an 18 month daughter, and an unborn son.
I am in Wrentham tonight, staying at a cousin’s house, taking advantage of a warm bed, a washer/drier, and high speed Internet. I’ve added another page called In the Press. Good news! The story of the Walk was on Boston.com and can be found here. Big thanks to Andrew Ryan, who persevered through three days of phone tag to catch up with me.
So the weekend is coming up, and I will be walking straight through, It should be nice weather, and if anyone would like to spend a few hours walking along with me, you’re more than invited. I will be covering West Bridgewater, Bridgewater, Middleborough, South Middleborough, Wareham, and into Bourne. Just send me an email and we can try to make arrangements.
By my estimation, I have about 60 miles from Wrentham to Bourne, and 60 miles from Bourne to Provincetown. That’s 120 miles, and if I’m making 18 miles a day, it’s going to be tight for me to finish before next Friday. I am going to have to look for shortcuts and pick up the pace.
So here’s a question… Massachusetts has the Berkshires, Pioneer Valley, Central Mass, North Shore, South Shore, Metro Boston, Cape Cod… but what is the area in the southeastern part of the state? Taunton, Mansfield, Foxboro, Raynham, Attleboro… What’s the name of this region? Southeast Mass? Southeastern Massachusetts?
So here’s a funny story. I have been walking and collecting messages for the governor in my notebook, and before I hand the notebook over to someone to write in, I always say, “This is a message for the governor.” I’ve met a few people, however, who assume the notebook is for me. I’ll give my notebook to this little old lady, and I don’t read over peoples’ shoulder as they write, but I’ll look at it afterwards and find she’s jotted down something like, “You’re a nice young man. Keep walking!” or “I hope you find a job.” So those messages are going to the governor, too.
Speaking of messages to the governor, there are two things that keep coming up again and again out here: lowering taxes and giving more money to schools. Whichever candiate can promise those two things will be the next governor. I haven’t heard anything about crime, stem cell research, and only one or two (supportive) comments about gay marriage. Healthcare comes up pretty frequently, but it’s education and taxes that are on everyone’s mind.
Case in point: check out this article from the Worcester Telegram and Gazette. This poor retired couple in Paxton have had to go back to work in a college dining hall to pay for their property taxes. At 83 years old, Richard Sears is back to working 40 hours a week for (probably) minimum wage. His wife Kathleen, who is 78, is working part-time. It kills me that that’s happening in this state.
Well, I need to get some sleep. Tomorrow is Foxboro, Mansfield, and maybe Easton. And if anyone has a backyard between Wrentham and Bourne, hook a brother up!
And by the way, remember the photo of the mailbox in the shape of a fish? Wendy Q. sent me this email today:
We live in Belchertown and I had to laugh when I saw your pictures so far. The one of the fish mailbox – I pass that damn thing twice a day dropping off / picking up my two children from daycare! THEN I had to see it on the web! HA! What are the chances of that!
Don’t worry, Wendy, I found a new mailbox today that will beat the band. I’ll post the photo as soon as I get home next weekend.
Take care everyone!