A Luminous Halo

"Life is not a series of gig lamps symmetrically arranged; life is a luminous halo, a semi-transparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end." --Virginia Woolf

My Photo
Location: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States

Smith ’69, Purdue ’75. Anarchist; agnostic. Writer. Steward of the Pascal Emory house, an 1871 Second-Empire Victorian; of Sylvie, a 1974 Mercedes-Benz 450SL; and of Taz, a purebred Cockador who sets the standard for her breed. Happy enough for the present in Massachusetts, but always looking East.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Hopkinton: It All Starts Here!

Recently I visited Hopkinton, Massachusetts with a friend who has a small summer cottage there. We ducked off the turnpike on the way home from Boston to check the property and to have a cup of coffee at the local Dunkin Donuts, which she was dying to show me. This DD is a thing of beauty, discreetly added onto a quaint pub on the corner of South Street as you head into Milford. No tacky pink-and-orange logo is visible from the street, and inside, in sharp contrast to every other DD I've ever been in, were tasteful and comfy couches, club chairs, and plasma TVs.

Franchise establishments like this are found in very tony towns, where zoning is extremely strict. But Hopkinton is no pricey suburb. It's a dinky little town which seems determined to stay that way.

Hopkinton's claim to fame is that it's where the Boston Marathon starts. Hence the motto. The official town website is a marvel of understatement. Tourists are advised:

If you are looking for a place to stay while visiting, we recommend looking at towns that are adjacent to Hopkinton.

A few other excerpts to give the flavor:

Town Forest was established in 1923.…In 1928, 10,000 small white pine trees were planted in the area and no care was provided for them to grow; few still remain there….Also located there is an old bridge over the river which was abandoned 1933 with the relocation of the roadway. This bridge has a historic interest in that it is a Dry Laid Stone Arch construction. It has been subject to vandalism over the years. Some of the cap stones are resting in the river. Neither Hopkinton's or Southborough's Conservation Commission's have had funds to restore it….Terry Park was acquired in 1964 from Thomas J. Terry, it is a 13 acre parcel of land located off Saddlehill Road, adjacent to the Hopkinton State Park. There are no known plans for this parcel and nothing has been done to it….Lake Whitehall is a fairly shallow lake….There are several boat launches around the lake. And no beaches to speak of.

The tone is a bit wistful. But I hope the author realizes what a gold mine Hopkintonians are sitting on. The "Places of Interest" section describes several projects undertaken by Boy Scouts in the area: clearing brush, opening up old cart roads, cleaning and marking trails. It seems the Scouts have done more for the town than the politicians. These days, no amount of money can buy what Hopkinton seems to have been able to hang onto, idyllic or not: its past.


Post a Comment

<< Home