We live in the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor which is sort of like a national park but without the funding. That’s the Blackstone Valley for you. Incredible historic areas which are unique to this continent.
Mills and a river with many canals and locks that rolls along for miles by the river. Sometimes, the river and the canal are one unit. When the water gets rough, the two parts divide into two portions, one having locks to allow barges to deal with waterfalls and white water, the other just the river. Uxbridge has one of the larger sections of a free-flowing canal.
In Worcester, they actually buried the canal under its streets. Worcester is an ugly little city that is always trying to dress up like a real city and never succeeds. Maybe because of its history of putrefaction, factories, river pollution, sewage pollution and some of the ugliest architecture I’ve ever seen anywhere.
Perhaps NOT burying the canal and polluting the river might have made them a more attractive location. We tried to buy a really lovely house up there, but no bank would finance it. It wasn’t that the house wasn’t a beauty. It was glorious and for us, cheap. But the banks wouldn’t finance anything up there. They said: “Buy somewhere else.”
And that is how we wound up in The Valley. By the river and the canal.
You cannot live in this valley and be further than a quarter of a mile from the river, a tributary, a stream, pond, or a canal. We have more parks than grocery stores and banks combined. We have herons, swans, ducks, geese, and about a million (or more) snapping tortoises in the river. Also, trout and baby trout.
Finally, fishing is allowed in many places and sometimes, even swimming. Personally, I’m not swimming anywhere near where those snapping tortoises are hanging. I value my toes.
This is a beautiful place to live. A little light in the culture department, but if nature does it for you, this is a great place to live.
And we do have the country’s first free public library in the middle of town. Just so you know, we used to be a bit snazzier!