The first night we slept at St. Susannes Church in Dedham, MA, ten miles from where we began. The day was hot and there were a couple mistakes, from lack of water co-ordination to staffing the support vehicles. But the march made it to the church where Seeds of Peace was preparing dinner. People sang songs and kicked the ball, chatted it up and started getting to know each other. The biggest irk of the day was the meeting at night. The meeting was facilitated by members of the RANT collective and the meeting started late, making it end even later.
The next day we got a bit of a late start, for another ten mile day. Some of us stayed behind with the support bicycles to help clean the church and the pastor there wrote a very nice letter of support for us. Today, the water was much more co-ordinated because we put it on a bike trailer and the trailer just leap frogged the march filling up water bottles every half mile or so.
This day, we were headed for Walpole. Walpole was a big issue because we faced pre-emptive threats from some locals. Some of us were scared, and rightfully. IT turned out to be not that big of a deal, the police and the people of Walpole were very accommodating. The city set us up in a town field just behind the police station in the center of town and when we arrived, they brought us a case of bottled water. A city council member also sent over a garbage can full of bottled water and non-corporate soda! Also, in the first hour of being there at least three cars of Walpoles citizens came by to wish us well and also donated us money!
The only time we saw the other side was when a group of motorcyclists stopped and stared at us for awhile before driving off and just before we were to sleep a few of them drove through the parking lot where Seeds of Peace was set up. But there was no confrontation and the next day we were off to walk some more.
The next day we were walking from Walpole to North Attleborough, MA…a fourteen mile day. The marchers perservered through a day of mostly light drizzles and at least an hour of heavy downpour. There was also a stop outside of Walpole prison where at political prisoner is being held. He wrote a statement in support of the march and got it to us before he was thrown in solitary confinement. In an act of solidarity the march stopped in fornt of the prison where many cops had rallied, did some street theatre and read the statement over the bullhorn which echoed far and wide. It was a pretty powerful statement and I wish I had the transcript. I think it is available on the DNC2RNC website.
So that was yesterday, last night we stayed at another church in North Attleborough that had a shower! This, after the fourteen mile day, was amazing. There were some private rooms where people could sleep a large hall for art making medics and other good stuff, and a smaller quiet room for sleeping. It was a pretty good night, although after three days I am feeling the fatigue and slept a good deal last night.
We have 25 more days to go, about 220 miles and we are going to make it. WE have been picking up people along the way (and losing some too), staying tight around 80 people, one support bus, four or five support cars and about ten support bicycles. IT is an amazing time.
Today we enter Providence, Rhode Island where we will have a rest day and a benefit show. I will try to post more regular updates as the opportunities to computers present themselves!