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Letter: My kind of place

A year ago this month, I moved to Greenfield from a far larger city, in the eastern part of the state, and I wanted to express my appreciation for what I’ve found.

There, it’s all I’ve Got Mine, Jack. Here, there is a wealth of community and people eager to volunteer. There, if you’re in the crosswalk and a car speeds through, the driver gives you the finger. Here, the driver franticly mouths apologies for not having seen you. There, the church across from City Hall holds free meals for the hungry in the basement, and city councilors aren’t ashamed to tell the local newspaper, “We have to get the poor out of the city center.” Here, the church across from town hall holds free meals for the hungry in the basement and parishes, charities and businesses line up to help. There, people who practiced Tai Chi at the common in the center were harassed by hecklers until they were driven away. Here, the meditation circle on Saturdays in the town common is treated with respect. There, every public improvement attracts a fire storm of protest about how the taxpayers are getting clipped. Here, the new high school proposal passed by overwhelming numbers. There, we scarcely exchanged words with our neighbors over 10 years. Here, we talked more than that to our neighbors in the first 10 hours. There, people on our street cut down trees because they “spoiled the view.” Here, our landlord planted trees because he didn’t think there were enough. There, if you want to volunteer for something, you’re handed a pamphlet-sized application more rigorous than any employment check. Here, you’re greeted cheerfully and invited to pitch right in.

I could fill a page worth of comparisons and anecdotes, but the upshot is that I’ve found a wonderful town, one of caring people, common courtesy, and decency. I expect, heaven willing, to be here for the rest of my life.

ROBERT TRAYNOR

Greenfield

Thank you for the kind words, Laura; I'm the author, and the reverse letter went to a newspaper in my hometown of Quincy. One wonders if they printed it.

Reading this brought a huge smile to my face! I have family out on the eastern side of the state and as much as I love to visit, I LOVE coming home to my little community. It's life a completely differant state. I often joke that we should do what Virginia did and have a Massachusetts and a West Massachusetts LOL. It's nice hearing that I am not the only one who appreciates Greenfield, and the great people who live here! Thanks for writing Robert, this made my day!

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