South Hadley is a quiet place. A great place to call home. So this morning the local NPR affiliate caught my ear with town news. Cool, I thought. When does sleepy South Hadley gets its moment to shine? Listen up, Keith.
WFCR has a regular feature called “Field Notes.” It’s a great segment featuring locals in nature. Stories range from research beneath the Quabbin Reservoir to last fall’s cicadas on Cape Cod.
The tale begins with a local woman in her 80s who’s been studying early Colonial history. Her research leads her to stories of a pirateer who may have escaped the law through Western Massachusetts. At the time, the Connecticut River was a major waterway in our New World.
Making breakfast this morning (farina with banana and honey if you’re curious) and listening to Morning Edition. NPR fans will know that the show has time slots built-in for local news.
While slicing bananas and stirring rice and making coffee, I hear bits and pieces of the story, each time catching part of a bigger and bigger story. I’m getting excited. My little town played host to an historical figure… better yet it’s the scene of a centuries-old legend. I want to jump in my truck and explore the scene of the discovery!
The woman tracing the tale back through time does great research. Consulting local experts and UMass anthropologists. Buys equipment. Canoes up and down the river. Studies maps, antique and modern. Gets a metal-detector from a tag-saleing neighbor.
The story is reaching is crescendo and I’m about to burn the rice. It turns out it’s me who’s burned. The tale centers on the amazing “foodie” journal discovered in the treasure trunk of one Captain Kidd.
I’m usually quick to catch on to things. Not today.