From Whitcomb Summit (again!)

Hello from the frosty Berkshires! I spent most of yesterday and today colllecting messages in downtown Shelburne Falls, at the town meeting in Rowe (interesting place, Rowe Mass… I’ll have to tell you about it), at the town hall/library/post office/police dept. (yes, they are all the same building!) and in front of Avery’s General Store in Charlemont. I have gotten some good messages, including “Please remember that Worcester isn’t even halfway across the state.” Right now I am posting this from Rt 2 on top of Whitcomb Summit, one of the few places in the Berkshires my TMobile phone gets reception. I am just about to drive (yes, I am driving this time, though one of the selectmen from the town of Florida recommended I return by walking backwards – hahaha) down past Dead Man’s Curve, past the Hairpin Curve (funny, I met a lot of folks on the Cape who were originally from the North Adams area, and when I told them I walked across the state, there first reaction was always, “You walked over Hairpin Curve, too!?” and into North adams and Willimastown to collect some more messages before it gets dark. Then I am driving home to Leicester, but I will be retracing my original steps and recording mileage. It’s really weird to be driving in two hours with the muscles of my lower right foot what took me eight days of back breaking, calf mashing, foot flattening hard work to cover. Even the short distance between Charlemont and North Adams, I see the spot where I camped out, the place where I bought apples, the rock I sat on to take a ten minute breather. That’s where I stopped to talk to a fisherman, that’s where I met the president of Worcester State, that’s where I went to the thank you brunch that inspired me to start collecting messages. Every foot of this road has a story, and I will never look at a map of Massachusetts the same way.
I was thinking of not walking but continuing to collect messages, but I think Tuesday will be the last day. I think that if folks KnOW who the next governor is going to be, it will skew their messages. This project has been so exciting because no one who writes in the notebook knows to whom they are actually writing!
Time for some appreciation, just for the last 28 hours: Thanks to Sheila from Heath, Win from Charlemont, and big thanks to Gregory Lewis from the West County News for continually inviting me to town meetings :). Thanks to Mike Wilmeth from the Shelburne Falls Independent, Aaron Miller of the archaeological dig http://www.taylorsfort.org, and Tucker Lichtfeld for the tour of Off Hand Glass Works in Heath. Thanks to the staff of the Heath Town Office/Library/Post Office/Police Dept/Board of Health (all in one builiding – the Margo the Post Master is also the Police Chief!!) for their film talent. Belated thanks to John Herman (www.Johnherman.org) for the camera – check out coyote-filled video coverage of the last few minutes of my walk on his site.
Thanks to Britney Oat for drving from Boston to Buckland to cover my walk for Boston University Cable TV. And BIG thanks to Candy Hammond of the Cape Cod Times for the story (http://www.capecodonline.com/cctimes/walking2.htm)
and Kevin Mingora for the cool photo.
OK… Its on to North Adams and Williamstown… And, like the Allman Brothers would say, Back to Where It All Begins….

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