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Masspastoral - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
cbertsch
cbertsch
Masspastoral
I finished my trip by staying overnight with an old friend and her partner in Northhampton, Massachusetts. It's the home of Smith College -- not to mention Thurston Moore, Kim Gordon and their daughter Coco -- where both of them teach and a beautiful place indeed. Sunday evening she and I went for a short walk from their house along this lovely stream:

On the way back, we had a great view of the Smith College boathouse, which I complicated with the sort of extremely-out-focus forgeound I've been favoring of late:

Yesterday morning, before she went to teach her first class of the semester, we drove to a nearby state park and went for a short hike halfway up a wooded hill. That's where I spotted the birch tree featured in last night's entry, as well as this rocky overhang:

The whole visit was lovely, particularly coming right after so much stress. And it made me feel connected to my childhood home, since the differences between the landscape of inland New England and inland Pennsylvania are pretty slight. The main one, ironically, is that our thirty-five acres of woods in northern Bucks County were entirely birchless. Neither the umber-barked river birches common in Maryland nor the white-barked sort that shine brightly in forests further north grow naturally in that part of Pennsylvania. And I'm surely from birch-loving stock, so the improvement on home was greatly appreciated.

Mode: drying out
Muse: dishwasher and dryer

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Comments
From: thewhitaker Date: September 14th, 2005 12:12 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I share in your appreciation of New England campuses. God knows I tried to find a way to foot the bill at places like Bennington, Amherst, and Harvard.
I enjoyed your photos, and sooner than I would like, I will be back in the Keystone State. My one solace is the turning leaves--which I have dearly missed since being here. There are birch trees in western PA!
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: September 14th, 2005 12:43 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I know. I'm not sure why our woods were birchless. Maybe it wasn't cold enough in winter for the bright, white sort? I hope your trip back isn't too unpleasant.
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