What struck me was how cheerful everybody was as we bent to the work. There were grizzled old anglers and people who come to Fletchers to walk their dogs. There were dads with their own second-graders, one of whom I watched as he tried to lift a 1,000-pound log on his own. I went over to clap the boy on the shoulder, saying I wish we had 100 more boys just like him. There were ladies in gardening hats. It felt good to be doing unpaid physical labor in a town that runs on intellect, good to be doing something to help the river we loved, good to be among other people who felt good doing the same thing.