Day Two Of The Walk Across CT 2022

There are some parts of this walk that are…well, just walking. Luckily, I had some pretty great company.

Walking past one of northwestern Connecticut’s beautiful farms.

Here’s a look at the second day of this year’s walk.

Starting off day two of the walk in Cornwall staring down a 450 foot hill is a daunting task when you’re alone. I was thankful Connie and Paul met up with me to walk with me up a portion of that big hill.

They’re part of a small group of people that’s doing a lot of really important work to preserve the ecology of this beautiful corner of our state. Our conversation about environmental stewardship in northwest Connecticut helped get my mind off my aching legs.

Connie, Paul, and I stopped for a photo outside Mohawk State Forest.

A lot of people who aren’t from around here think Connecticut is just one big New York suburb — this walk is a perfect reminder that it isn’t. On one short stretch of Route 4 in Litchfield County alone, there’s great fishing and hiking, gorgeous lakes, even honor code art galleries and bison meat!

Farther down the road, I did something I don’t often do: I stopped off in a cemetery. Connecticut is dotted with really old cemeteries, filled with history. When I stopped in Goshen I found two of my relatives (my grandmother was a Griswold). Yet another reason I love the walk — I get to explore our state in ways I would never otherwise.

Two of my relatives from the early 1800’s, buried in Goshen.

After about three hours of walking, I stopped at Nodine’s Smokehouse in Goshen and grabbed lunch with Republican First Selectman Todd Carusillo. We talked about the affordability crisis facing young families today. Between rising housing prices and giant student loans, it’s harder than ever to afford to start a family.

Lunch with Goshen’s First Selectmen, a sandwich from Nodine’s.

As I set off down Route 63 towards Litchfield, some more folks joined me for a stretch of my walk. Along the way, I walked with a Bill and a Will, two very friendly people on an otherwise lonely road.

Will, a digital producer for MSNBC, moved with his family to CT during the pandemic.

Heading into Litchfield, I couldn’t pass up the chance to stop in at Connecticut Junior Republic. Thanks to the staff and students for hosting me today. It was fascinating to hear about your work and to meet a few of the farm animals! Grateful for all they do to help juvenile court involved kids get back on the right track.

Learning about the hands-on educational opportunities offered at CJR in their greenhouse.

Talking to folks in Litchfield, I heard about a lot of good things going on. Two new hotels are coming, and restaurants are back doing brisk business. On the flip side, I also heard a lot about the bears that are causing trouble up here.

Talking with folks in Litchfield about the community.

On my walk to the Litchfield Community Center for my town hall tonight, I couldn’t resist stopping at the Litchfield Candy Company for a snack to keep my energy up. Chocolate covered pretzels might not be the best fuel for a walk across Connecticut, but they were delicious.

After that, I went on to have a great town hall meeting tonight in Litchfield with a surprise guest: Congresswoman Jahana Hayes! It was perfect — when she was speaking I got to sit down and rest. What a team!

Thank you to everyone who came out to meet me and asked such insightful questions, and thank you, Jahana, for sharing the floor with me tonight.

Our town hall meeting at the Litchfield Community Center.

Day two in the books, and another 16.3 miles down. I’ll be hitting the road bright and early tomorrow, and I’m looking forward to meeting more of you as we make our way across the state. Just hoping tomorrow won’t start with another long hill.

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