I still don't know how to say Pawtucket.
I left New York with the usual sense of allegiance and yearning, and headed east to Pawtucket, RI, to crash on a stranger's couch for the night while I made my way to Boston.
Pawtucket is depressed, and so was I, as I crammed an ice pack under my back and sweated through the 85 degree, 100% humidity Rhode Island night. Waking up smelling like a badger, I took a cold shower and headed to Newport.
I discovered many things in Newport: a copy of Tibetan Peach Pie at Spring Street Books, my unfailing immaturity at seeing the word "seamen," a solid bowl of clam chowder at the The Black Pearl, and a horrible stabbing pain in my right foot.
As I hobbled around the marina, dumbstruck by the sudden, intense pain that stopped me in my tracks every few steps, I assumed it would pass and limped on to my car, ready to wander around Boston for days before setting off to work on a farm in New Hampshire.
After all, what were the odds that I would get an inconvenient and immobilizing injury on a trip which involves hours of walking around cities and hiking our National Parks, right?