You know, I’m starting to get the odd feeling that I’m not really from anywhere. I know that I’ve mentioned before the fact that, according to local lore here in the green mountains, you don’t get to be a “local” unless you were born here- period. Too bad kid- as the Hindus say- better luck next life.
On the other hand, it’s only a scant four-hour drive between here and the New York City suburb where I grew up, but I fit in there about as well as a… a …. a gooseberry in a half-caff iced latte moccacino.
So you can see my dilemma. My mother, lives in New York and calls herself a New Yorker- and she is. (Of course, you can have moved to New York from the Outer Flamblastic Nebula yesterday, have polka dotted skin, and speak only in homonyms, and still be considered a perfectly legitimate New Yorker.) But I’m pretty clearly not. How do I know? Well, I have this weird propensity to smile at people. And I have a bizarre aversion to having TVs shoved in my face everywhere I go. And I don’t swear nearly enough. So you can see I’m kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place. Or a farmstand and a Starbucks if you prefer. Continue reading Native to Nowhere →
“Reborn on the Fourth of July” originally aired on WAMC on July 4th, 2007. Click on the WAMC logo to listen to the audio version of this article.
The fourth of July is coming— and it’s a good thing. This has been a tough year for our family, what with my father-in-law’s passing from cancer in December, the requisite bout of seemingly endless winter illness that comes of having two small, school-age children, and a local economic climate that is causing everyone we know to rethink whether staying in the sticks is really worth it… or even possible.
I’m reminded of the local joke about “Moonlighting in Vermont.” Despite the fact that a Vermont existence sounds idyllic to folks who live elsewhere, the reality is often something else again. Never mind the hard winters… almost everyone we know faces a never-ending struggle to make living here make financial sense. As my husband likes to say, it’s hard to enjoy the famous Vermont “Quality of Life” if you’re working 24 hours per day.
But then, just when we seem ready to despair, and pack up our assorted belongings, kids and animals for more lucrative and suburban climes, summer always seems to arrive just in time. Continue reading Reborn on the Fourth of July →