(Ok, well, not today, but you know how I am with song lyrics...)
It was, however, 20 years ago that I came to town. Fresh out of college and ready to make my mark on the world, it was only natural that I'd choose a town of 1500 people and work in a small, independent k-8 school with 225 or so students-- I mean, that screams me, right?
It turns out to be about the best decision I've ever made. Granted, when one takes the road less traveled, it's hard to know what the other path may have lead one to. (Apologies to Mr. Frost for removing his poetry from the sentiment.) I have met more amazing people in this little community, and have relationships with people that sustain me through every situation. I met WB* working at that school. I got married while working at that school, and resigned my position in order to live my dream of being a stay home mom. We moved to town so our kids would get to go to that school. That school is no longer open as a school-- which is another story for another day-- but it is fast becoming a vibrant community center. We don't have town sewer, or garbage pick up, or even a full time police or fire department, but what we do have is worth much more: we have neighbors and friends who are in it together.
This place is our home, in every meaning of the word.I know we will always be 'from away', but I think we've been accepted regardless. This is where our children will tell people they are from-- and then have to explain what towns it is near because no one from outside of Western Maine will ever know where this place is. It's not Camelot or Brigadoon... but some days, when I cross the little wooden bridge to our property, I do feel like I'm in a magical world that only the lucky ones get to see.
So here's to another 20 years... and, if luck is on my side, another 20 after that.
*Truth be told, we'd met at college, but it didn't take. He was
dating someone else, and I was just a little freshman in his section of
science lab. He claims he remembers me, but I don't blame him for not-- I looked like Velma from Scooby Do, and was just as dorky.