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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Observations about a small Massachusetts town

From having been here a few times now...

There aren't many places to get a decent breakfast at 7:30 in the morning.

They take their pedestrians very seriously in that cars actually stop for you.  In Scranton one gets the impression that cars actually accelerate when you begin to cross the street.

At least one town (Webster) really cares about cats.  There is a place called "Cat Connection" whereby homeless kitties have a place to go.  Yes, as pathetic as it sounds, I've stopped there twice to make funny sounds at the cats in the window.  If I lived here I would be volunteering to help.

The economy doesn't seem to be all that great.

Things are older here, especially buildings.

They love donuts.  There is Dunkin Donuts, Dippin Donuts, and Honey (something or other) Donuts.  No word on whether there is a Timmy Horton's tucked in some corner somewhere.

Speaking of DD, you can't tip the counter staff here.  That was hard not to do.  The young folks that work at donut shops have a tough job (you try to remember all those silly drink types) and they don't get paid much.

Scranton suffers from grand old homes being turned into apartment buildings.  Webster suffers form just really old apartement buildings.  Some of these buildings were probably designed for two units, but not have something like six packed into the same space.

It just seems colder here.  Not sure why.

The Maple trees are big and grand.  There is something almost universally beautiful about the leaves on a Maple tree when, after first appearing, reach full size.  That says as much about rebirth as any religious ceremoney ever did.

Scranton has the remains of the coal industry, small New England towns have the remains of the textile industry.  Yes, long before that shirt of your was made in Bangladesh, it was probably made in some small American town like the one I am writing this from.  The old grand mills are everywhere here, with their enormous hulks sitting along river banks like beached and rotting whale carcuses.  

This place makes me what to read Thoreau.

There are empty cigarette boxes everywhere.  The smoking rate must be close to epic Chinese porportions in these parts.  At least in China lungs are accustomed to so much industrial pollution that a camel or two probably represents a breath of fresh(er) air.

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