Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Sunday, July 3, 2016

sand dollars

 Greensboro is a quiet little town on the eastern shore of Maryland. Mostly an agricultural community,  not too much changes, except the year on the calendar. Two main thoroughfares brush up against it, Route 50  and Route 404. These roads lead to the beach. The beach in this case is a general term that describes several locations in Maryland and Delaware. The beaches are subject to the " weekend stampede " during the season. For us, in Greensboro, that stampede just passes us by. We are affected only slightly. Plan your trips to the store around that traffic and you will be fine.  This is a stark contrast to the place where I grew up. Where I grew up the stampede ended, and milled about for the entire season before returning to their home grazing land. I understand that nowadays the herd is much larger and stays around longer. Hasn't changed much here in Greensboro. The " beach " people, as I call them, pass through, but seldom stop. There just isn't much to attract them. And I like it that way. Of course the local businesses and communities would love to attract those " sand dollars. " The question is how ? Just how do you market small town America ? For me , I want to say it isn't for sale.
 Greensboro and the surrounding area are growing however. We are becoming a suburb of sorts. Little pockets of development have sprung up. The farmland being sold. As transportation becomes easier and the cost of city living increases folks are heading to the country. It has ever been so. Make those big city dollars and spend them in the country. There are those that will capitalize on this. The farms becoming a farm stand, and an image being sold. Park the tractor out front with a wagon hitched up. The farmers running the stands are the modern type. They don't grow that stuff, just market it. Spread a few bales of straw and hay about, maybe a few " crafts " and label everything homegrown. That is how you market an image. Set the stage and they will come.
 I'm not blaming anyone for this, it is just the way things go. People have to make a living. When the family farm isn't profitable anymore what choices are left ? You can sell the property or attempt to shift the manner in which revenue is generated. By far the quickest and easiest path is to just sell. Sell and pack up your stuff. Move into town, as the saying goes, and be a shop owner. A good 8 to 5 occupation. A steady income and no worries. Isn't that the idea ? The days of the hardscrabble farmer are over. Some will sell all but the homestead and market their heritage.
 I am happy to just watch the beach people pass us by. A few of their " sand dollars " fall by the wayside and help our economy. Greensboro is on the periphery and so we don't get much. There is always talk of how we could attract more. Who doesn't want more revenue ? The town has bills to pay just like you and I. Citizens expect certain services from their government, and someone has to pay for those services. If we could only attract more " sand dollars. " The thing is I don't believe many here understand the final cost. It is more than goods and services that are being purchased with those " sand dollars. " Heritage is lost. A way of life must be exchanged to satisfy the needs of the beach people. I say allow the stampede to pass unimpeded. The dust will settle and life will continue. Don't get caught up in the herd. You just might get trampled ! Best just stay on the porch and watch it go by. That's my advice.