Postcards from Connecticut
Above are some photos from sites near Cornwall Bridge, Connecticut, where I grew up. I’m just back from the December more-spiritual-time-of-year pilgrimage.
The first photo is of Kent Falls State Park. The other two are of the West Cornwall covered bridge, which was probably built around the mid-1800s.
The West Cornwall covered bridge is a one-lane bridge. Cars wait on one side of the bridge until the other side’s traffic has passed through. The bridge stands over the Housatonic River.
I thought the population of Cornwall — which includes Cornwall, Cornwall Bridge, West Cornwall, North Cornwall and Cornwall Hollow — had “mushroomed” from nine hundred to one thousand people. But I learned from my mother on this trip that the population is “over 1,400.”
There is only one red flashing light in Cornwall, just as when I grew up there. There still is no need for a red-green-yellow traffic light.
On the way back to the Washington, D.C. suburbs, I stopped at a Wal*Mart in New Milford, Connecticut. I sneezed in the toothpaste aisle and some benevolent stranger two aisles away shouted out “Bless you.” It snapped into my head at that moment that some of my friendly ways that seem out of place in the city must come from where I grew up.
In places like Cornwall, when your car breaks down at the side of the road, you know that the people in every passing vehicle will stop to help you and make sure that you’re all right. The flip side of that coin is that when there’s some new car or person in your driveway, EVERYONE will be gossiping about it the next day at the post office.
This is the culture of these people.