I should have posted this at the start of the trip, rather than the end. Today we’re at the location marked by the green bed icon near the center of Connecticut.
I can spell “Connecticut” without even thinking too hard about it because I was born here, in the city of New Britain, during a huge snowstorm that paralyzed the East coast in December of 1947. Yesterday we rode along some of the same routes that I regularly travelled on my bicycle a few decades ago, when I was but a callow lad. I don’t need a navigator to tell me which way to go around here. The hills, though, such as they are in the Connecticut River Valley, are shorter and less steep than they were when I was younger.
I have this odd feeling that I belong here, in some deep way, since this is where I grew up; and at the same time that I am a complete stranger here, since I would have to search for a long time and with some care to find anyone who remembers me or my parents.
When we rode by Avery’s Soda Co. I thought of the times I stopped by there on my way to town on a hot summer day, put a dime in a box on the counter, and helped myself to a cream soda out of the fridge. When we had picnics, we had a case of variety of flavors of soda from Avery’s; no one brought Coke or Pepsi. These memories turned the sight of a plain building into something rich and strange. But the actual reality was a plain building, disjunct from the profusion of firing synapses and the fantastical inner perceptions that existed nowhere outside my brain, if they can be said to exist at all.